Monday, June 24, 2013

Snowden Stuck in Moscow For Now

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Previous Post:
Snowden Odyssey: Hong Kong to Moscow


From the Washington Post
Just where Snowden, 30, was remained a mystery. His ultimate destination was reported to be Ecuador, where he has asked for asylum, perhaps by way of Havana, where there are daily flights from Moscow.
But at a news conference in Hanoi on Monday, a few hours after the Havana-bound plane had left Moscow, Ecuadoran Foreign Minister Ricardo Patiño said he could not say where Snowden was.

“We are in close contact with the Russian government,” Patiño said, “but the specific information as to his whereabouts, we cannot share that at this time. We don’t have it and we can’t share it.”

. . . In a call with reporters on Monday, WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange confirmed that Snowden was headed for Ecuador, along with a lawyer from WikiLeaks, which is assisting Snowden. “Edward Snowden left Hong Kong on the 23rd of June bound for Ecuador via a safe path through Russia and other states,” he said. Both he and lawyer Sarah Harrison “are healthy and safe, and they’re in contact with their legal team,” Assange said.

Moscow itself has said little to say about Snowden’s presence here. Despite a direct request from the United States to return him to U.S. soil to face charges of leaking government secrets, Russian officials said Monday that they had no legal authority to detain him after he arrived from Hong Kong on Sunday.

A frustrated Secretary of State John F. Kerry said he was troubled that neither China nor Russia responded to the espionage charges filed against Snowden by the United States by taking steps to transfer him to U.S. custody.

From CNN
Snowden told Ecuadorian President Rafael Correa that it is "unlikely that I will have a fair trial or humane treatment" if handed over to U.S. officials to stand trial, according to a letter from Snowden read by Foreign Minister Ricardo Patino.

While Patino, speaking at a news conference in Vietnam, said the county has yet to decide on Snowden's asylum request, he questioned whether it was Snowden or the United States that was acting badly in the affair.

He called the surveillance programs revealed by Snowden "a breach of the rights" of people around the world.

"We have to ask, who has betrayed who?" he said.


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