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Times explains decision to publish leaks

NEW YORK, Nov. 28 (UPI) -- The New York Times said Sunday it is publishing secret documents from WikiLeaks because they "serve an important public interest."

In a statement released as it began reporting the information, the newspaper said the diplomatic cables show "the goals, successes, compromises and frustrations of American diplomacy in a way that other accounts cannot match."

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The Times said it "has taken care to exclude … information that would endanger confidential informants or compromise national security."

The paper said it showed the cables it plans to print to the government and dropped some, but not all, when officials objected.

It said its policy is not to "reveal operational intelligence that might be useful to adversaries in war" or "material that might lead terrorists to unsecured weapons material, compromise intelligence-gathering programs aimed at hostile countries, or disclose information about the capabilities of American weapons."

The Times said it will post on its Web site "the text of about 100 cables -- some edited, some in full."

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