• Sat
  • Dec 20, 2014
  • Updated: 4:27pm
Edward Snowden

Snowden still stuck at Moscow airport after permit mix-up

Lawyer denies Russian reports saying fugitive was given permit to leave airport terminal

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 24 July, 2013, 8:00pm
UPDATED : Thursday, 25 July, 2013, 2:32am

Fugitive whistle-blower Edward Snowden's hopes of leaving Moscow's Sheremetyevo Airport for the first time in a month yesterday were dashed when he failed to secure permission from Russia to leave.

An airport source said the former security agency contractor - wanted by the United States for revealing details of government intelligence programmes - was handed documents by his lawyer which were expected to include a pass to leave the transit area.

But Snowden did not go through passport control and lawyer Anatoly Kucherena, who is assisting him with his request for temporary asylum in Russia, said he did not have the pass he needed.

It was not clear whether there had been a last-minute political intervention or hitch, but Kucherena said he hoped Snowden's status would be resolved soon.

In Washington, the White House said it was seeking clarification of his status. Russia's RIA Novosti news agency earlier quoted an unidentified security official as saying that Snowden was given the document, allowing him to formally enter Russia. Kucherena denied this. "As of today, this document has not yet been given [to him]," he said.

A large crowd of media representatives gathered outside a door marked "Staff only" on the lower floor of Terminal E at Sheremetyevo after the Russian agency report, with police and security guards on patrol.

President Vladimir Putin has said that Snowden can be granted asylum in Russia only if he stops leaking NSA secrets.

Three countries in Latin America known for their anti-US stance - Nicaragua, Bolivia and Venezuela - have said they would be willing to take him.

But there are doubts about whether he would be able to travel on to Latin America after Bolivian President Evo Morales's plane flying from Moscow earlier this month was forced to land in Vienna. The plane was searched amid suspicions that Snowden was on board.

Morales yesterday said his country had accepted apologies from France, Spain, Italy and Portugal. "I want to say that, while we are not completely satisfied, we accept the apologies."

He added that Bolivia reserved the right to pursue actions with international organisations it considered necessary to ensure the incident was not repeated.

Meanwhile, the Obama administration was facing a Congressional amendment aimed at blocking the blanket surveillance of phone records.

Agence France-Presse, Reuters, Associated Press


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hard times !
safe and sound in the zone
for weeks already
once in Russia
Neither the NSA or CID
can do anything to harm
our whistle-blower
Mr.Edward Joseph Snowden
sooner or later
his permit will be granted
have him sent back to
the States
no way ! he's a treasure
to organisations of Russia
his knowledge of hackings
and computer data analysis
are much needed and valued
in the region of the
Polar Bear
besides, the beauty
Anna Chapman
is awaiting our leaker
spy marries 'traitor'
will become a legend
in the history of
both America and
hard times !
cheers for our whistle-blower
he can finally leave the zone
where he has been for weeks
tour Moscow and get a job
while be alert for safety which
is the paramount concern
maybe a dating with Ms
Anna Chapman will soon
take place
wish our leaker good luck
and stay safe and
sound in the Polar
Bear's breast.
Safe in the arms and bosom of a polar bear? What can make US as black as a kettle?


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