LONDON — WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange said on Friday that there were some references to UFOs in "yet-to-be-published" confidential files obtained from the U.S. government.
In an online chat hosted by the U.K.'s Guardian newspaper, he also said that no one has been harmed by his organization's release of troves of secret documents.
"WikiLeaks has a four-year publishing history. During that time there has been no credible allegation, even by organizations like the Pentagon, that even a single person has come to harm as a result of our activities," Assange said in response to a reader's question. "This is despite much-attempted manipulation and spin trying to lead people to a counter-factual conclusion. We do not expect any change in this regard."
Assange said he and colleagues were aware of death threats following the publication of diplomatic cables on their website.
"The threats against our lives are a matter of public record, however, we are taking the appropriate precautions to the degree that we are able when dealing with a superpower," Assange was quoted as saying.
Asked if he has ever been forwarded documents dealing with UFOs or extraterrestrials, Assange responded, "Many weirdos e-mail us about UFOs or how they discovered that they were the anti-Christ whilst talking with their ex-wife at a garden party over a pot plant. However, as yet they have not satisfied two of our publishing rules:
1) that the documents not be self-authored;
2) that they be original.
"However, it is worth noting that in yet-to-be-published parts of the Cablegate archive, there are indeed references to UFOs."
Britain's Guardian is one of a number of newspapers around the world with early access to diplomatic cables seen by WikiLeaks.
The whereabouts of Assange, a 39-year-old Australian, are unknown, but some reports have said he is believed to be in southern England.
Swedish authorities said on Friday that information missing from a European arrest warrant they had issued against Assange for alleged sex crimes had been handed to British authorities.
"We sent it. They asked for complementary information and now they have it," Swedish Prosecution Authority spokeswoman Karin Rosander said.
Bjorn Hurtig, Assange's attorney in Sweden, told Dutch TV that the WikiliLeaks founder would fight extradition if arrested.
Hurtig repeated Assange's denials of a sexual crime in Sweden and said any evidence against him was "very very weak."
"One woman says it's rape another woman says its a sexual offense," Hurtig said. "I will not say if he says he has had sex with them. I will tell you he denies rape he denies sexual offenses he denies having committed any sort of crime against these women or against any other person."
Crippling Web traffic
In his reponses on the Guardian's online question-and-answer session, Assange described Pfc. Bradley Manning, who was detained in connection with the leaked documents, as an "unparalleled hero" — if it was he who leaked the cables to WikiLeaks, he said.
The Q&A session with was crippled at first by heavy traffic but it was not immediately clear if The Guardian newspaper website was under a denial of service attack.
The Guardian said on one of its Twitter feeds that readers should be patient because the website is under heavy visitor loads.
Assange has not made a public appearance in nearly a month, although he has spoken to journalists over the Internet.
Swedish authorities have issued a Europe-wide warrant for his arrest, while WikiLeaks has been forced to switch to a Swiss domain name after its American domain name provider withdrew service. Its sites have also been hit by denial of service attacks.
'History will win'
"The Cable Gate archive has been spread, along with significant material from the US and other countries to over 100,000 people in encrypted form. If something happens to us, the key parts will be released automatically," Assange wrote in response to a question about the way material is distributed.
- Only on msnbc.com
- Industrial heartland showing signs of life
- Dial it down: Pesky CDC callers incite fury
- Father to alleged kidnapper: Why?
- It's time to deal with that overflowing inbox
- 25 years after Challenger, teacher’s words resonate
- Is China's 'Mr. Ferrari' slowing down at 60?
- He trained the Taliban – and they kidnapped him
"Further, the Cable Gate archives is in the hands of multiple news organizations. History will win. The world will be elevated to a better place. Will we survive? That depends on you."
Assange also addressed the attention he has been getting while the rest of his organization has remained largely anonymous.
"In the end, someone must be responsible to the public and only a leadership that is willing to be publicly courageous can genuinely suggest that sources take risks for the greater good," he said.
"In that process, I have become the lightning rod. I get undue attacks on every aspect of my life, but then I also get undue credit as some kind of balancing force."
Reuters and The Associated Press contributed to this report.
Answering questions online, Assange also said that anyone making threats against his life should be charged with incitement to murder.
- Related content
Share10 Air Force orders probe into crop circle formation in Krasakan, Jogotirto Village, District Berbah, Sleman, Yogyakarta
Crop circle was formed in the rice fields in Krasakan, Jogotirto Village, District Berbah, Sleman, Yogyakarta on 23rd January, 2011. The circle had a diameter of about 25-30 meters residents are alleging them to be created by UFO.Rice field located in the village street was like a beautiful work of art. There is no trace of damage in rice crop around the circle. The circle that was formed from the plants are still green rice. Wind can't cause because the shape is very neat and for animals it also impossible.
Marshall Imam Sufaat said : "If we examine the photographs, we will possibility see if the patterns were in fact created with powers beyond human knowledge," Imam said as quoted by tempointeraktif.com, on the sidelines of the Air Force commander meeting in Yogyakarta."
Imam, however, declined to comment further on the geometric pattern.
The crop circles are in a paddy field and resemble a geometric artwork, while the other parts of the field remain untouched.
The patterns were first reported by a farmer, Tukiman, on Sunday at 6 a.m.
As seen from the hill Suru Tempo in a distance of 200 meters from the circle, looking like a UFO shape.
Sleman Police Chief Adjunct Commissioner Irwan Ramaini not sure whether its created by UFO or other natural phenomena. What is certain is that great circle tracks are still being investigated scientifically. "We can not ensure that traces of what could be a natural phenomenon or something else," he said.
According to UFO Indonesian Community or UFONESIA on his Twitter account UFONESIA, crop circles that characterized the original rod bent and not broken just because the object of providing an intense explosion.
Based on observations UFO trail in Sleman, genuine possibility, because the rice stems are not damaged and only bowed.
To prove the genuine crop circles or not, they takes the data in the field and advanced research in the laboratory. If these plants prove to be defective then it is a human act.
"This particular crop circle is fascinating because of its striking resemblance to the muladhara chakra -- one of the basic chakras in Tantric Hinduism."
The pattern has already drawn thousands of locals and people from outside Yogyakarta, causing traffic jams in the vicinity.
Kompas.com quoted a Rejosari villager named Basori as saying that he had heard a strange noise like that of a helicopter on Saturday at 10.30 PM West Indonesia Time landing on a rice field near his house.
Basori, whose house was located on the northern part of the crop circle-marked rice field said he heard the flying object’s sound for thirty minutes.
"The sound was heard for thirty minutes but at the moment I didn’t think much of it I thought it was only the sound of a passing helicopter," said the 41-year-old Basori.
The man’s confession was confirmed by Ayu Rukini, 32. "I also heard the sound. At the time, I and my husband were wathing TV. I thought it was an air force helicopter on a training flight," said Basori’s wife.
The crop circle at the rice field that certain people in the world frequently associated with UFOs was first observed by Yudi, 20. Yudi was quoted by Kompas.com as saying that he first saw the crop circle when passing the rice field on his way to work on Sunday at 05.00 AM local time.
"When passing the rice field, I saw the paddies fall down but they formed a neat, orderly pattern," he said adding that he had not heard the sound Basori and his wife, Ayu Rukini, had claimed on Saturday night.
Yudi said he sat near Basori’s house from Saturday evening to early Sunday at 03.00 AM but he heard nothing. "During the night, there was no rainfall... But on Sunday morning, there was this pattern (crop circle) in the middle of the rice field," Yudi said.
This crop circle could clearly be seen from the peak of a hill on the northern part of the rice field. Locals called the hill "Mount Suru", he said. Tens of people who were eager to see the unprecedented phenomenon climbed the slippery hill, including Syamsul Bahri, 37.