Julian Assange
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WikiLeaks' Julian Assange Promises To Release Pertinent Election Docs

The whistle-blower promises to release documents for up to 10 weeks that will reveal information about the upcoming election, tech giant Google, mass surveillance and more. 

The political climate is heating up once again now that WikiLeaks' founder Julian Assange plans to release troubling information related to the upcoming election.

With Tuesday (Oct. 4) making the controversial program's 10th anniversary, Reuters reports Assange will spend up to 10 weeks releasing a million documents on the U.S. election and three governments. In July, the site released up to 20,000 emails from the Democratic National Committee, causing the resignation of DNC chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz just before the Democratic National Convention. The internal emails suggested members prevented Bernie Sanders from securing the nomination.

During the announcement, Assange denied a dislike for Clinton but didn't specify whether the documents would be damaging to her campaign. "There has been a misquoting of me and Wikileaks publications ... (suggesting) we intend to harm Hillary Clinton or I intend to harm Hillary Clinton or that I don't like Hillary Clinton," he said. "All those are false." His vague and flat announcement was overly hyped by Trump supporters who claimed Assange's "October Suprise" would end Clinton's campaign.

A larger announcement was expected with Assange speaking from the balcony of his home at the Ecuadorean Embassy in London but was canceled due to concerns about the whistle-blower's safety. In August, Assange hinted the death of DNC staffer Seth Rich appeared to be related to the release of the DNC emails. "Whistle-blowers go to significant efforts to get us material and often very significant risks," Assange said to Dutch television program Nieuswsuur. "As a 27-year-old works for the DNC, was shot in the back, murdered just a few weeks ago for unknown reasons as he was walking down the street in Washington." Conspiracy theorists have labeled Rich WikiLeaks' source for the DNC emails after Assange announced a $20,000 reward for information related to Rich's death.

Assange is wanted in Sweden for a 2010 rape and could face charges of espionage if extradited to the United States for WikiLeaks' activities. Describing them as "entertaining" and revealing, Assange says additional materials will target war, oil, mass surveillance and Google.

Since 2006, WikiLeaks has released over 10 million documents on Guantanamo Bay, illegal military operations in Iraq and Afghanistan and diplomatic cables between embassies around the world.

Watch Assange's announcement below.

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Beyonce Applauds Meghan Markle For Including Black Traditions At Wedding

This Black History Month, Beyonce has been honoring a number of public figures who have contributed to their communities. On Wednesday (Feb. 20), Bey penned a heartfelt tribute to Duchess of Sussex, Meghan Markle for her philanthropic work and for her culturally-inclusive royal wedding.

In the post, which is published on her official website, Beyonce commended Markle on her "charitable work in communities of color." "Meghan’s background as a film and tv actress has allowed her to use her platform for good," the singer wrote. "As a global ambassador for World Vision, she traveled to Rwanda to see how access to clean, safe water impacts children, an issue that is near and dear to our hearts. She also visited and supported the Myna Mahila Foundation in Mumbai, an organization that helps solve the menstruation challenges many women and girls in the community face."

The Lemonade artist also praised the Duchess for incorporating traditions from her own culture in her royal wedding to Prince Harry in May 2018. "[She] brought many Black traditions to her Royal Wedding including a Chicago-based Black pastor, an amazing gospel choir, and a young Black cellist" she continued. "At the wedding her culture was front and center, and she and Prince Harry have continued to push the race relations dialogue forward both near and far."

She concluded her note, by congratulating Markle on her pregnancy. "In honor of Black History Month, we bow down to one of our Melanated Monas,” Bey added. "Congrats on your pregnancy! We wish you so much joy."

The tribute comes shortly after honored Markle on Instagram after winning Best International Group at the 2019 Brit Awards with husband, Jay-Z. The video showed the power couple standing in front of a reimagined image of Markle as the Mona Lisa as their single "Apesh*t" played in the background. "We wish you so much joy," Beyonce wrote in the caption of her Instapost.

Read Beyonce's full tribute here.

 

View this post on Instagram

 

Thank you to the Brits for the award for Best International Group. I won this award back in 2002 with my besties, Kelly and Michelle. How lucky am I to have been in a group with my other best friend, the GOAT Hova. 🙌🏾 In honor of Black History Month, we bow down to one of our Melanated Monas. Congrats on your pregnancy! We wish you so much joy.

A post shared by Beyoncé (@beyonce) on Feb 20, 2019 at 2:48pm PST

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Shareif Ziyadat

Jussie Smollett Arrested For Filing False Report

Jussie Smollett has reportedly been arrested and is in the Chicago Police Department's custody on Thursday (Feb. 21) Chief Communications Officer Anthony Guglielmi confirms. He has reportedly been charged with one count of felony disorderly conduct for filing a false police report.

"Jussie Smollet is under arrest and in custody of detectives,"  Guglielmi announced on Twitter. "At 9am at #ChicagoPolice Headquarters, Supt Eddie Johnson, Commander of Area Central Detectives Edward Wodnicki will brief reporters on the investigation prior to the defendants appearance in court."

Smollett has been charged three weeks after he told law enforcement that he was the victim of an alleged hate crime. He claimed that two Trump supporters brutally attacked him in the early hours of the morning in Chicago. The assailants allegedly doused him with a liquid substance and hung a noose around his neck before yelling racial and homophobic slurs.

Following his initial statement, police noticed several holes in his statement. After several interrogations, officials interviewed two brothers believed to be involved with the attack. Footage last night proved that the two had purchased several supplies that may have been used at the time of the incident. The newly-surfaced video, along with other evidence obtained by the police, prompted the charges brought against Smollett.

Smollett's attorneys,Todd Pugh and Victor Henderson, issued a statement to USA Today, maintaining Smollett's innocence. "Like any other citizen, Mr. Smollett enjoys the presumption of innocence, particularly when there has been an investigation like this one where information, both true and false, has been repeatedly leaked. Given these circumstances, we intend to conduct a thorough investigation and to mount an aggressive defense."

If Smollett is convicted, he faces up to three years in prison.

Press Briefing: Jussie Smollet is under arrest and in custody of detectives. At 9am at #ChicagoPolice Headquarters, Supt Eddie Johnson, Commander of Area Central Detectives Edward Wodnicki will brief reporters on the investigation prior to the defendants appearance in court. pic.twitter.com/9PSv8Ojec2

— Anthony Guglielmi (@AJGuglielmi) February 21, 2019

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John Lamparski

Diddy Settles Sexual Harassment Lawsuit With Former Chef

Diddy has reportedly reached a settlement with his former personal chef in a sexual misconduct lawsuit that was filed in 2017, NBC Los Angeles reports.

The settlement stems from a lawsuit Cindy Rueda filed nearly two years ago. Rueda was reportedly Diddy's personal chef from Apr. 2015 to May 2016. She accused the Bad Boy mogul of sexual harassment and unfair wages. She claimed that she never received additional pay for extra work hours during her time of employment.

Additionally, she alleged that Diddy requested that Rueda serve breakfast to him and a guest in his bedroom. During those incidents, she said she was forced to see "Mr. Combs and his guest indisposed and engaged in sexual activity." Upon entering, she alleged that he would then yell and curse at her.

In Aug. 2017, a Los Angeles Superior Court Judge sent Rueda's case to mediation outside of the court due to the terms of an agreement she previously signed as an employee for Diddy.

The terms or value of the settlement has not been disclosed at this time.

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