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      WikiLeaks to Release 2.5 Million Syrian Cables

      The self-appointed whistle blowers of WikiLeaks have begun releasing a trove of Syrian emails revealing Western ties.
      By Gabe Kahn
      First Publish: 7/5/2012, 3:01 PM

      Julian Assange
      Julian Assange
      Reuters

      WikiLeaks on Thursday began publishing more than two million emails from Syrian political figures, ministries and companies that have done business with the country.

      The so-called 'Syria Files' show how the West and western countries "say one thing and do another" when it comes to dealing with the Assad regime, the self-appointed whistleblower site says.

      Syrian has decended into open civil war following a 16-month crackdown by the regime that has left at least 16,500 people dead.

      The emails date from August 2006 to March 2012. According to WikiLeaks, the leaked emails date from August 2006 to March 2012 and derive from more than 650,000 email addresses.

      Among them are email addresses associated with the country's ministries of foreign affairs, finance and culture, and for foreign companies.

      WikiLeaks said that, as there is a "large dataset" to go through, it could take months for all the stories contained in the emails to come out. The emails are in various languages, including Arabic and Russian.

      Much the same happened with the trove of US diplomatic cables that WikiLeaks and its founder Julian Assange published between 2010-11.

      Assange, who was not able to attend the unveiling of the 'Syria Files,' is currently holed up in the Ecuadorian embassy in a desperate bid to escape extradition to Sweden over sexual assault claims.

      Assange claims he risks extradition to the US to face charges over the cable leaks.

      However, several senior officials speaking off the record have said the US does not to give Assange the publicity that would come from a lengthy and high profile trial.