8 Oct 2012

Assange looks to sue Australian PM

9:45 pm on 8 October 2012

WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange says he has hired lawyers to investigate how to sue Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard for defamation.

Mr Assange says comments made by Ms Gillard in 2010 have affected the viability of his organisation.

The statement in question was made on radio almost two years ago, when Ms Gillard condemned WikiLeaks' publication of classified information as "grossly irresponsible" and "illegal".

Mr Assange says it has led to credit card companies barring customers from donating to his whistle-blowing website.

The United States is carrying out an investigation after the website published a mass of leaked diplomatic cables.

Mr Assange also rejected claims by Australia's Foreign Minister Bob Carr that he is receiving full Australian consular support.

He remains at Ecuador's embassy in London after seeking asylum as part of a bid to avoid extradition to Sweden where he is wanted for questioning over rape allegations.

The Australian citizen is concerned that if he goes to Sweden, authorities will allow him to be extradited to the US.