Putin Says Snowden Can Stay in Russia ‘If He Wants To’ – But Only If He Stops Damaging US

Russian President Vladimir Putin said NSA Leaker Edward Snowden could stay in Russia if he wants to but only if he stops damaging the United States.

Russia Today reported:

President Vladimir Putin says NSA leaker Edward Snowden may stay in Russia, if he wants to, but only if he stops activities aimed against the United States.

“There is one condition if he wants to remain here: he must stop his work aimed at damaging our American partners. As odd as it may sound from me,” Putin told a media conference in Moscow.

In Putin’s opinion, Snowden considers himself “a fighter for human rights” and it seems unlikely that he is going to stop leaking American secret data.

However, Russia is not going to extradite Snowden, the president underlined.

“Russia has never extradited anyone and is not going to do so. Same as no one has ever been extradited to Russia,” Putin stated.

“At best,” he noted, Russia exchanged its foreign intelligence employees detained abroad for “those who were detained, arrested and sentenced by a court in the Russian Federation.”

Snowden “is not a Russian agent”, the president said, repeating that Russian intelligence services were not working with the fugitive American.

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