HAVANA, July 12 (Itar-Tass) - Former U.S. intelligence service officer Edward Snowden was not aboard the Aeroflot liner that arrived in Havana from Moscow on Thursday evening.
"He was not aboard. The flight was absolutely normal," a crew member told reporters who gathered at the arrival zone at the airport. The plane on Flight SU-150 landed at Jose Marti international airport at 18:37 local time (02:37 Moscow time).
The new wave of rumours about possible arrival of Snowden emerged in connection with the fact that the route of the Aeroflot liner that time did not lie across the U.S. air space. It became known later that the route was changed due to weather conditions.
Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro earlier this week confirmed his country's decision to grant political asylum to the U.S. citizen. "We have taken the decision to grant asylum to young American Snowden on behalf of independent Venezuela," he stated. Nevertheless, the South American country did not receive a formal reply from Snowden to the offer yet, Venezuelan Foreign Minister Elias Jaua said on Thursday.
The 30-year-old former CIA technical specialist could take a direct flight of Venezuela's Conviasa airline to get into Caracas from Havana. There was a flight to Caracas scheduled for 20:50 local time on Thursday (04:50 Moscow time, Friday).
A citizen of the world without a passport
Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro this week confirmed the decision of the country to provide political asylum to the American. "We made the decision to give refuge to young American Snowden on behalf of independent Venezuela" he said. However, the South American country "has not received a formal response" from Snowden on his offer yet, as reported by the head of the Venezuelan Foreign Ministry Elias Jaua on Thursday.
On July 10, it was reported that the World Service Authority organization has issued a passport of a citizen of the world for Snowden. It is valid not in all countries, in particular, it is not recognized in Russia, the United States and the European Union. However, it is unclear how the ex-CIA employee may receive this document, as Snowden's U.S. passport has been extinguished.
The U.S. intelligence "whistleblower" remains in the transit area of Sheremetyevo airport since June 23.
The former CIA technician could get a direct flight from Havana to Caracas with the Venezuelan airline Conviasa. According to the existing schedule, the next flight will take place at 20:50 local time on Thursday.