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Putin: Snowden must not damage relations with US

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 17 July, 2013, 3:20pm
UPDATED : Saturday, 20 July, 2013, 2:15pm
 

MOSCOW (AP) — President Vladimir Putin says National Security Agency leaker Edward Snowden has been warned against taking any actions that would damage relations between Moscow and Washington.

Snowden has applied for temporary asylum in Russia, three weeks after arriving at a Moscow airport from Hong Kong. The United States wants him sent home to face prosecution for espionage.

Granting Snowden asylum would add new tensions to U.S.-Russian relations already strained by criticism of Russia's pressure on opposition groups, Moscow's suspicion of U.S. missile-defense plans and Russia's resistance to sanctions against the regime of Syrian President Bashar Assad.

On a visit to the Siberian city of Chita on Wednesday, Putin said "we have warned Mr. Snowden that any actions by him connected with harming Russian-American relations are unacceptable," according to Russian news agencies.

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