"Our long-term goal is to build a strong, transparent platform to support whistleblowers, both in terms of technology and politics, while at the same time encouraging others to start similar projects," the newspaper quoted a source connected to the new site as saying.
The source said a short-term goal was to complete the technical infrastructure and ensure that "the organization continues to be democratically governed by all its members, rather than limited to one group or individual," an apparent reference to Assange's leading role at WikiLeaks.
Openleaks' philisophy and content is not expected to be very different than Wikileaks'; helping anonymous sources deliver sensitive material to public attention.
In a documentary by Swedish broadcaster SVT, due to be aired Sunday and obtained in advance by The Associated Press, former WikiLeaks spokesman Daniel Domscheit-Berg said the new website will work as an outlet for anonymous sources.
"Openleaks is a technology project that is aiming to be a service provider for third parties that want to be able to accept material from anonymous sources," Domscheit-Berg said rare interviews conducted in Berlin.
The Associated Press has also obtained a documentary by Swedish broadcaster SVT, which confirms the launch of the new site.
The timing of the new site comes as pressure mounts for both WikiLeaks and its 39-year-old Australian founder Assange after the start of publication of some 250,000 secret U.S. diplomatic cables last month.
The WikiLeaks site has come under attack, while Assange, who is now in a British jail fighting extradition to Sweden on sex crime allegations, has been threatened. Swiss Postfinance, MasterCard , Visa , PayPal and others have cut ways to send donations to the group, impairing its ability to raise money.
In the meantime, Wikileaks has managed to gain the respect of web attackers, who have already begun coordinated attacks on major corporate and government Web sites in defense of WikiLeaks The attacks thus far have been of limited effect, shutting down the MasterCard Web site, not its online transactions.