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Wikileaks 'embarrassing at worst' for NZ govt, says Key

“Embarrassing at worst” is how Prime Minister John key describes the likely content of any cables from the US Embassy in Wellington, made public as part of the ‘Wikileaks' tranche of cable traffic published earlier today.The quarter of a

Rob Hosking
Mon, 29 Nov 2010

“Embarrassing at worst” is how Prime Minister John key describes the likely content of any cables from the US Embassy in Wellington, made public as part of the ‘Wikileaks’ tranche of cable traffic published earlier today.

The quarter of a million cables, which include 1490 from the US Embassy in Wellington, are unlikely to include anything damaging, Mr Key told his post-Cabinet press conference this afternoon.

Radio New Zealand has reported the leaks include queries about former Prime Minter Helen Clark’s credit card status at the time she was being considered for her current senior United Nations job, but Mr Key ducked questions.

“I’m going to leave it for others to comment about that.”

“There’s bound to be one or two comments in there that might lead to a bit of embarrassment, at the most, but nothing more serious,” Mr Key said.

“Every embassy and every High Commission around the world plays a role in gathering information to the best that they understand it or perceive it and reporting back to the mothership, if you like and there’s always a bit of colour and a bit of a artistic license, if you like."


He had been briefed by Ministry of Foreign affairs and Trade officials about material that could be in the cable traffic but refused to comment on the content of that.

“Nah, we’ll leave that to see whether they get released.”

Mr Key said he had not been told “in any depth” about any comments in the cable traffic about himself, “but I’m sure it’d be glowing.”

There were no indications yet either any of the cable traffic would put operatives’ lives at risk.

“I would be very very concerned if it puts peoples' lives at risk…I don’t know the information contained in the overwhelming bulk of those cables so I can’t tell you if that’s a credible risk.” 

Rob Hosking
Mon, 29 Nov 2010
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Wikileaks 'embarrassing at worst' for NZ govt, says Key
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