WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange believes the publication of the Iraq war logs gave victims of the fighting a “sense of justice”.
The whistleblower said disclosing 400,000 classified United States documents created a better understanding of how war can go wrong.
Speaking in an interview to be broadcast on Monday, Assange said he hoped the controversial move would dissuade people from engaging in “immoral conduct”.
He said: “I hope it creates disincentives for engaging in immoral conduct in war. Disincentives for engaging in war crimes, in Iraq, in other places. It gives the victims of war in Iraq a sense of justice. A better understanding of how war goes and how war goes wrong.”
WikiLeaks was condemned by the British and United States governments after it released 400,000 files on the war in Iraq last October. The material suggested evidence of torture was ignored and detailed the deaths of thousands of Iraqi civilians.
Assange, 39, will learn whether he should be extradited to Sweden to go on trial accused of rape and other sex charges later this month.
In the interview, he said Army specialist Bradley Manning, who the United States suspects leaked the information, is “galvanising” the anti-war movement.
He said: “I can’t say whether Bradley Manning is a source or not … or friends of his or whatever. He is galvanising the US anti-war movement. He’s becoming a centraliser that pulls everyone together, some central figure others can rally around.”
Speaking about the WikiLeaks operation, Assange said there are “very good reasons” it has no publicly listed offices and he takes personal security precautions.
He said: “I have many mobile phones. But when you’re involved in this sort of business, there are security procedures you have to go through to prevent your mobile phone being used to track you.”