Amazon has issued a public statement denying government involvement in its decision to drop the WikiLeaks site from its AWS platform - a claim that WikiLeaks says is a 'lie.'
In a statement on the company's website, Amazon describes as 'inaccurate' claims that a government inquiry into WikiLeaks' dissemination of confidential diplomatic cables, or the distributed denial of service attacks of which WikiLeaks is still the target, had any impact on the company's decision to pull its web hosting service.
Instead, it claims that WikiLeaks was violating 'several parts' of the Amazon Web Services terms of service agreement - all of which relate to the publishing of the diplomatic cables.
In the statement, Amazon explains that "our terms of service state that 'you represent and warrant that you own or otherwise control all of the rights to the content [...] that use of the content you supply does not violate this policy and will not cause injury to any person or entity.'
"It's clear," Amazon claims, "that WikiLeaks doesn't own or otherwise control all the rights to this classified content" - proving strike one for the company's agreement with Amazon.
"Further," Amazon explains, "it is not credible that the extraordinary volume of 250,000 classified documents that WikiLeaks is publishing could have been carefully redacted in such a way as to ensure that they weren’t putting innocent people in jeopardy" - strike two.
"Human rights organisations have in fact written to WikiLeaks asking them to exercise caution and not release the names or identities of human rights defenders who might be persecuted by their governments" - something which, it would appear, proved the third and final strike for Amazon's staff and resulted in WikiLeaks getting the boot from the AWS hosting platform.
"When companies or people go about securing and storing large quantities of data that isn’t rightfully theirs, and publishing this data without ensuring it won’t injure others," Amazon summarises, "it’s a violation of our terms of service, and [those] folks need to go operate elsewhere."
Amazon's statement has been met with incredulity by WikiLeaks staff, which posted its own short statement on the micro-blogger service Twitter claiming that "Amazon's press release does not accord with the facts on public record."
"It is one thing to be cowardly," WikiLeaks claims, "another to lie about it."