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Assange leaks own correspondence with publisher

Julian Assange has leaked his own correspondence with his publisher onto his online outpost, the whistle-blowing website extraordinaire, Wikileaks.

The embattled Antipodean is attempting to put his side of a story which saw a bunch of his disjointed recollections published as an "unauthorised autobiography". The dubiousness of which title does not escape Assange who calls it, "a contradiction in terms".

The yarn published by Scottish publisher Canongate, "is a narrative and literary interpretation of a conversation between the writer and me," Assange protested, in a statement put out on publication of the book Julian Assange: The Unauthorised Autobiography, ghost written by Andrew O’Hagan.

While the statement has been online since Thursday last, a subsequent update sees the attachment of copies of correspondence, appended by Assange to back up his version of events which, loosely, is that he's been stitched up.

"Although I admire Mr. O’Hagan’s writing, this draft was a work in progress. It is entirely uncorrected or fact-checked by me. The entire book was to be heavily modified, extended and revised, in particular, to take into account the privacy of the individuals mentioned in the book. I have a close friendship with Andrew O’Hagan and he stands by me," wrote Assange to explain why he's distancing himself from the publication he'd undertaken to write.

He's added copies of emails and transcripts of conversations between himself, lawyers and publisher to illustrate the battle that was going on over the book. Pleading to be a regarded a victim of poverty as well as being fervently persecuted over his activities in and out of bed, Assange, disputes Canongate's claims that he'd largely given upon collaborating on the book, once sent an advance.

In figures announced yesterday the book was found to have sold fewer than 700 copies, one of those evidently going to Assange himself.