Snowden applies for Norway asylum

Ann Törnkvist
Ann Törnkvist - [email protected] • 2 Jul, 2013 Updated Tue 2 Jul 2013 09:34 CEST
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American whistleblower and fugitive Edward Snowden has applied for asylum in several European countries including Norway, WikiLeaks announced on Tuesday morning.

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Whistleblowing platform WikiLeaks said early on Tuesday morning that Snowden's asylum applications were handed over to the Russian consulate in the transit zone of Moscow airport, which has been Snowden's temporary home for the past week. 

The Norwegian embassy in Moscow has confirmed that staff received Snowden's asylum appliation via fax, but Norway does not, however, accept asylum applications that are filed from outside the country. 

Justice Department chief of staff Pål Lønseth told the NRK network that the asylum bid would not be accepted. 

"Norwegian law prohibits seeking asylum from abroad, and normal procedure says that Edward Snowden's application will be rejected," said Lønseth.

Snowden has now reached out not only to Ecuador and Iceland, but also Norway, Germany, Austria, Switzerland, France, Italy, Ireland, The Netherlands, Poland, Spain, and Finland in Europe, along with China, Russia, Cuba, Bolivia, Brazil, Venezuela, Nicaragua and India.

In a statement, former CIA contractor Snowden accused the US of wanting to undercut his right to apply for asylum in other nations by making his American passport invalid. He called the move "citizenship as a weapon".

"On Thursday, President Obama declared before the world that he would not permit any diplomatic 'wheeling and dealing' over my case. Yet now it is being reported that after promising not to do so, the President ordered his Vice President to pressure the leaders of nations from which I have requested protection to deny my asylum petitions," Snowden said in a statement. 

"This kind of deception from a world leader is not justice, and neither is the extralegal penalty of exile. These are the old, bad tools of political aggression. Their purpose is to frighten, not me, but those who would come after me."



Ann Törnkvist 2013/07/02 09:34

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