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Edward Snowden files request to have his asylum in Russia extended

July 09, 2014, 20:53 UTC+3 MOSCOW
The request was filed with the Moscow Region department of the Federal Migration Service
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© EPA/AXEL HEIMKEN

MOSCOW, July 09. /ITAR-TASS/. US intelligence leaker Edward Snowden has filed a request to Russia’s authorities to have his temporary asylum in the country extended, Snowden’s lawyer Anatoly Kucherena said Wednesday.

The request was filed with the Moscow Region department of the Federal Migration Service (FMS), Kucherena said.

“The procedure in line with the Russian legislation is very simple: if a citizen of any country wishes to stay or live on the territory of Russia, in this case, if we are talking about Edward Snowden, we have undergone the procedure of receiving temporary asylum,” he said.

“We filed documents to extend his stay on the Russian territory,” the lawyer said.

He did not give any details about the desired status of Snowden, should the asylum be extended. “The decision is up to the Federal Migration Service,” Kucherena said.

The United States accuses Snowden, 31, of leaking information on the US National Security Agency’s (NSA) secret surveillance programs to the media. Despite US extradition requests, he was granted a one-year temporary asylum in Russia in August 2013 after spending more than a month in the transit zone of Sheremetyevo airport outside Moscow.

He has reportedly found a website maintenance job and resides at an undisclosed location in Russia.

The US authorities say Snowden violated two clauses of a 1917 law on espionage by divulging some secret data related to national defense and by deliberately transferring US intelligence data to individuals not authorized to obtain such data. Snowden is also charged with stealing US government property.

Should he turn up on the American soil one day, he faces ten years in prison on each charge.

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