SYDNEY, June 13 (Xinhua) -- WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange has called whistleblower Edward Snowden "a hero to all humanity"in a live video address to the University of Sydney on Thursday.
"Men like Snowden have shown extreme degrees of civic courage," he told a packed auditorium of delegates on the closing night of the 19th International Symposium on Electronic Art.
"Edward Snowden revealed something that I have been speaking about for a long time. .. That as the internet has penetrated every aspect of society, riding on with it is mass surveillance.
"He provided a clear direction so that we can understand where we are now, and for that he is .. a hero to all in fact of humanity. Because this phenomena is something that affects all of humanity," said Assange.
Snowden is understood to be hiding out in Hong Kong after coming forward on Sunday as the source of leaked classified material exposing U.S. spy agency data collection program PRISM. Assange has previously expressed support for the ex-CIA contractor, calling on the international community to offer him protection.
Assange's address to Australia also comes during the ongoing trial of U.S. Army private Bradley Manning, accused of leaking military intelligence to WikiLeaks.
Assange called on international citizens to show the same courage displayed by Snowden and Manning to achieve a more free and transparent society.
"We feel and live keenly because of the risks we take. Every day that we do not live up to our principles is a wasted day," he said.
Assange also spoke about his plans for an Australian WikiLeaks party, backing his campaign to be elected to the Australian Senate- - which he hopes will allow him to escape extradition to Sweden from Britain.
Assange has now been closeted away in the Ecuadorian embassy in London for nearly a year, but the Australian hacker said his self- imposed imprisonment has only helped his cause.
"The way the situation is going is actually helpful for our cause for me to be in prison. For a while, not forever, but for a small while.
"The situation is very useful for projecting the principles that I believe in. And every day that we are able to project our principles into the world, every day that we are able to operate in such a way that we follow our beliefs .. is a day that has been truly lived," he said.
WASHINGTON, June 12 (Xinhua) -- The classified phone and internet surveillance programs, which sparked controversy in the recent week, have prevented dozens of terrorist plots, the U.S. National Security Agency (NSA) chief Keith Alexander claimed Wednesday, promising to disclose more details within next week.
Speaking at a Senate panel hearing, Alexander said there were "dozens of terrorist events" that these programs have helped prevent. Full story
WASHINGTON, June 10 (Xinhua) -- The White House on Monday declined to comment on a whistle-blower who revealed details about two classified surveillance programs by the U.S. National Security Agency (NSA).
White House spokesman Jay Carney said at the daily briefing that he would not comment on the development of a whistle-blower who admitted he was behind the recent leaks of classified surveillance programs. Full story
BEIJING, June 10 (Xinhuanet) -- An ex-CIA employee working as a contractor at the US National Security Agency says HE is the man who leaked details of a top secret US surveillance program.
29-year-old Edward Snowden said he felt his country was building an unaccountable and secret espionage machine that spied on every American. Both the Washington Post and Britain’s Guardian newspapers published his identity on Sunday. Snowden is a former CIA technical assistant. He decided to break his silence after becoming disenchanted with Obama. Full story