Snowden is on the move
Edward Snowden has left his secret refuge in Hong Kong and boarded a commercial flight to Moscow this morning. He’s due to arrive at 5:15 pm local time. According to the South China Morning Post, Russia is not his final destination.
Hong Kong authorities apparently just dithered long enough to let Snowden skip town, despite an American extradition request.
The US government on June 14 filed espionage and theft charges against the former CIA technician, and the US National Security Council confirmed that it had put in a formal extradition request to the Hong Kong government.
The Hong Kong government said on Sunday that it had requested more information so the Department of Justice could consider whether to go forward with the US extradition request.
“As the HKSAR government has yet to have sufficient information to process the request for provisional warrant of arrest, there is no legal basis to restrict Mr Snowden from leaving Hong Kong,” the statement said.
Not to brag too much, but I predicted Hong Kong and China would not keep Snowden around very long. We’ll see what Russia intends to do with him.
[UPDATE (8:58 pm China time): Now news reports from Russia say Snowden will board another flight to Cuba on Monday, and may fly on to Venezuela.]
[UPDATE (9:02 China time): WikiLeaks confirms it assisted Snowden’s departure to a “democratic nation.” I gagged on that one.reuters.com]