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Leaked US cables reveal sensitive diplomacy

WASHINGTON (AP) - WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange (ah-SAHNJ') says confidential diplomatic cables the online whistle-blower published Sunday "show the U.S. spying on its allies."

The newspaper Le Monde says one diplomatic memo asked U.S. diplomats to collect U.N. officials' information including Internet passwords, credit card numbers and frequent flyer numbers. And diplomats were asked to obtain fingerprints, ID photos, DNA and iris scans of people of interest to the U.S.

The New York Times highlights documents that indicate the U.S. and South Korea were "gaming out an eventual collapse of North Korea" and discussing the prospects for a unified country.

And the Times reports on documents showing the U.S. used hardline tactics to win approval from countries to accept freed detainees from Guantanamo Bay.

The White House has said release of the WikiLeaks documents "put at risk our diplomats." But State Department spokesman P.J. Crowley has played down the spying allegations, saying diplomats "collect information that shapes our policies and actions" and what they've done they "have done for hundreds of years."

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