[QODLink]
Americas

Venezuela president offers asylum to Snowden

Nicolas Maduro offers "humanitarian asylum" to ex-US intelligence contractor who leaked surveillance programme details.

Last Modified: 06 Jul 2013 01:15
Email Article
Print Article
Share article
Send Feedback
Snowden has reportedly been turned down for asylum by 21 other countries [Reuters]

Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro has said he had decided to offer asylum to former US intelligence contractor Edward Snowden who is believed to be waiting in transit at a Moscow airport.

Snowden, who leaked US intelligence documents revealing a vast phone and internet surveillance programme, has petitioned several countries to avoid capture by Washington.

"As head of state of the Boliviarian republic of Venezuela, I have decided to offer humanitarian asylum to the young Snowden ... to protect this young man from the persecution launched by the most powerful empire in the world," Maduro said on Friday.

Meanwhile, Nicaragua has said it could accept an asylum request from Snowden "if circumstances permit".

"We are an open country, respectful of the right of asylum, and it's clear that if circumstances permit, we would gladly
receive Snowden and give him asylum in Nicaragua," President Daniel Ortega said on Friday.

Ortega, an ally of Maduro, did not elaborate on the conditions that would allow him to offer asylum.

Snowden has reportedly been turned down for asylum by 21 other countries since he outed himself as the NSA whistleblower responsible for leaking information about US government spy programmes.

His bid for Icelandic citizenship hit an impasse earlier on Friday when the country's parliament voted not to debate it before the summer recess.

211

Source:
Agencies
Email Article
Print Article
Share article
Send Feedback
Topics in this article
People
Country
City
Organisation
Featured on Al Jazeera
Weaving and handicrafts are being re-taught to a younger generation of Iraqi Kurds, but not without challenges.
The author argues that in the new economy, it's people, not skills or majors, that have lost value.
Colleagues of detained Al Jazeera journalists press demands for their release, 100 days after their arrest in Egypt.
Mehdi Hasan discusses online freedoms and the potential of the web with Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales.
Featured
As nuclear age approaches eighth decade, visitors flock to historic bomb craters at New Mexico test sites.
Venezuela's president lacks the charisma and cult of personality maintained by the late Hugo Chavez.
Despite the Geneva deal, anti-government protesters in Ukraine's eastern regions don't intend to leave any time soon.
Since independence, Zimbabwe has faced food shortages, hyperinflation - and several political crises.
After a sit-in protest at Poland's parliament, lawmakers are set to raise government aid to carers of disabled youth.
join our mailing list