WikiLeaks files criminal complaint in Sweden ahead of Obama visit

WikiLeaks filed a criminal complaint in Sweden on Tuesday ahead of the arrival of President Obama and a U.S. delegation.

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The complaint — the first of four WikiLeaks says it has planned — concerns the “unlawful seizure” of WikiLeaks property in 2010, just after the group published thousands of classified U.S. intelligence cables pertaining to the war in Afghanistan.

The 186-page affidavit claims the United States stole evidence about “a war crime perpetrated by U.S. forces in Afghanistan in which more than sixty women and children were killed.”

“Now is the time for everyone to take a stand to put an end to Obama’s war against national security journalism — at home and abroad,” WikiLeaks editor-in-chief Julian Assange said in a statement. “This filing, recent court victories, and our successful intervention in the case of Edward Snowden, represent the continuing reorientation of WikiLeaks from legal defense to legal attack.”

Earlier this month, the White House announced that the president and a U.S. delegation would head to Stockholm after pulling out of Obama’s planned meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Moscow.

Assange has been living in the London office of the Ecuadorian embassy for almost a year, as Swedish officials have sought to extradite him back to the country to face sexual assault charges.

The White House has said Obama’s trip to Sweden has nothing to do with the country’s difficulty in extraditing Assange, which mirrors the U.S.’s difficulties in extraditing National Security Agency (NSA) leaker Edward Snowden.

Assange has been a vocal supporter of Snowden, who has been charged in the U.S. for releasing top secret details about the NSA’s surveillance program. Snowden has been granted temporary asylum in Russia after spending nearly a month in the Moscow airport.