WikiLeaks changes venue for "October surprise" announcement

WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange holds a copy of a U.N. ruling as he makes a speech from the balcony of the Ecuadorian Embassy, in central London, Britain February 5, 2016.

Assange should be allowed to go free from the Ecuadorian embassy in London and be awarded compensation for what amounts to a three-and-a-half-year arbitrary detention, a U.N. panel ruled on Friday.

Peter Nicholls/Reuters

Last Updated Oct 4, 2016 1:41 PM EDT

WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange will no longer deliver the highly-anticipated “October surprise” announcement from the balcony of the Ecuadorian embassy in London because of “security concerns,” NBC News’ Jesse Rodriguez first reported. Instead, the 45-year-old whistleblower may unveil the details of the political revelation--which he hinted could prove “devastating” to the Clinton campaign-- during a video press conference from Berlin Tuesday morning.

Before the venue change, Trump surrogate Roger Stone tweeted on Sunday that Hillary Clinton would be “done” on Wednesday following the disclosure of the WikiLeak findings.

He hasn’t, however, shed light on the document’s origins, though he has claimed to be in contact with the WikiLeaks founder.  

“Well, it could be any number of things,” Stone said in August. “I actually have communicated with Assange. I believe the next tranche of his documents pertain to the Clinton Foundation but there’s no telling what the October surprise may be.”

Assange’s most recent shakeup--the release of nearly 20,000 internal emails that pointed to possible Clinton favoritism by the Democratic National Committee during the primary process--caused some upheaval during the Democratic Convention in Philadelphia. The party’s chairwoman resigned, and Bernie Sanders’ supporters booed when the Vermont senator urged them to vote for Clinton instead. Assange has since promised to release documents that could have a significant impact on the looming general election.

The timing of tomorrow’s possible October surprise is also striking, coming on the 10th anniversary of WikiLeaks founding.

Assange has traditionally made major pronouncements overlooking supporters from London’s Ecuadorian embassy -- his political safe haven ever since Swedish police called for his arrest in June 2012 following a series of rape accusations. Though Assange has denied the allegations brought forth by two women, he lives under house arrest fearing extradition to the country.   

  • Julia Boccagno

    Julia Boccagno is a news associate for CBS News.