Former CIA and National Security Agency officer Edward Snowden received a Russian passport. This was reported by his lawyer Anatoly Kucherena.
“Edward received yesterday a passport of a citizen of the Russian Federation and took an oath in accordance with the law,” said the lawyer.
Journalists asked the lawyer how Snowden perceived receiving a Russian passport.
“Of course, he is glad, thanks the Russian Federation for having received citizenship, now a full-fledged citizen of the Russian Federation. And most importantly, according to the Russian Constitution, it can no longer be extradited to a foreign state,” he told the Interfax news agency. Kucherena also indicated that he had recently seen his client, Snowden “is doing well.”
After obtaining Russian citizenship, Snowden stated that stability would positively affect the life of his family, and also asked for respect for private life.
“After two years of waiting and nearly ten years in exile, a little bit of stability will have a positive effect on my family. I pray for privacy for them and for all of us, ”he said.
The United States is waiting for his return
Former CIA officer received Russian citizenship on September 26th. The decree on admission to citizenship was signed by Vladimir Putin. In October 2020, Snowden was granted an indefinite residence permit in Russia, at the same time he announced plans to acquire citizenship with his wife. Snowden married Lindsey Mills at the Russian registry office in 2017.
September 26, when Snowden was officially granted Russian citizenship, US State Department spokesman Ned Price said that the position of the US authorities in relation to the former CIA officer has not changed.
“Mr. Snowden must return to the United States and face justice like any other American citizen” , – he said.
Price also noted that “apparently, now he may well be called up” to participate in the hostilities in Ukraine. Snowden’s lawyer ruled out such a scenario. According to him, Snowden does not fall into the category of conscripts, because he did not serve in the Russian army.
In 2013, Snowden, being an employee of the National Security Agency United States, handed over classified information to journalists from The Washington Post and The Guardian concerning the surveillance of American intelligence services over the information communications of citizens around the world. It turned out that the intelligence service had been following 35 heads of state and government of the world for more than five years.
in the Sheremetyevo transit zone, received political asylum in Russia. According to him, he asked for asylum in 27 countries, but they all refused him, fearing sanctions from Washington.