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No political asylum request from Snowden - Venezuelan President

June 26, 2013, 10:04 UTC+3
"The revelations made by him are important for all of humanity," said Nicolas Maduro
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CARACAS, June 26. /ITAR-TASS reporter Sergei Sereda /. Former CIA officer Edward Snowden has not appealed to the authorities of Venezuela requesting political asylum, said Venezuela’s President Nicolas Maduro on Tuesday.

“We haven’t received a formal request for political asylum from Snowden; it seems, such a request was made to president of Ecuador (Raphael) Correa,” Maduro said when having arrived in Haiti on an official visit.

“If such a request is received, we would also consider it since a political asylum is in any way a measure of humanitarian protection,” said the president.

The Venezuelan leader pointed out that the practice of granting political asylum has a long tradition in Latin America. “This guy has greatly surprised the world, his statements were intended to improve the lives of people and it is recognized by the major part of Americans, especially by young people,” commented Maduro Snowden’s actions. “The revelations made by him are important for all of humanity; no one has the right to spy on others.”

Multiple electronic copies

Edward Snowden, who has escaped from the U.S. and denounced the governmental program of electronic surveillance in the country and in the world, has taken precautions to ensure that the information collected is not gone, if anything happens to him.

American journalist Glenn Greenwald, who publishes the sensational revelations and has been supporting confident contact with Snowden for six months, told today to the Washington web-edition Daily Beast that his partner has sent to several people encrypted electronic files with his archive. The recipients haven’t got access to these folders because they haven’t received the necessary passwords. But “if something happens to Edward Snowden, then, as he told, me he has arranged everything so that they receive access to his archives,” said Greenwald.

He also mentioned that there are many people who have received the archive of Snowden, and that they are “all over the world.” In the opinion of Greenwald, Snowden did everything possible to “make the stories inevitably public.”

“A clear legal basis for the expulsion of Snowden from Russia”

U.S. hopes that Russia will expel Edward Snowden, who is currently in Moscow in the transit lounge of the Sheremetyevo airport, where he has arrived on a flight of Aeroflot from Hong Kong on Sunday.

The official representative of the U.S. National Security Council Caitlin Hayden stated: “Although we do not have an extradition treaty with Russia, nevertheless there is a clear legal basis for the expulsion of Snowden, based on the status of his travel documents, as well as on the charges against him. Therefore, we are asking the Russian government to take immediate measures to expel Snowden and strengthen the already strong cooperation in the field of law enforcement, which we support, especially after the bomb blast at the finish of the Boston Marathon.”

Who is Edward Snowden?

30-year-old American Edward Snowden is a former CIA officer who worked recently for U.S. National Security Agency. In May, he fled from the United States and then revealed the details of governmental program of electronic surveillance in the country and around the world. In the beginning, Snowden remained in Hong Kong, but on Sunday he flew to Moscow. Now the former CIA officer is in Moscow's Sheremetyevo International Airport.

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