Ecuador, Russia each dodge the Snowden issue
NSA leaker Edward Snowden’s caught in a Catch-22 situation.
He could maybe gain asylum in Ecuador, but he’s stuck in the transit zone of the Moscow airport with no viable travel documents. Meanwhile, the Russians seem willing to let him cool his heels in the transit zone for months.
Ecuador’s president Rafael Correa says Ecuador can’t begin to consider giving Snowden asylum until Snowden can physically get to Ecuador or an Ecuadorian embassy or consulate.
“He’s in the international area of the Moscow airport, but basically under the care of the Russian authorities,” Correa told The New York Times. “Strictly speaking, the case is not in our hands.”
But the USA revoked his passport, so he can’t enter Russia or even book a flight out of Sheremetyevo International Airport. While Russians seem sympathetic to his plight, the Russian leadership would just as soon Snowden move along, the quicker the better.
Russian President Vladimir Putin spokesman Dmitri Peskov told Echo of Moscow radio Sunday Snowden was “not a topic on the agenda of the Kremlin.”
There are rumors than Venezuela may offer Snowden a way out of his airport limbo. President Nicolas Maduro, who will be in Moscow Monday, seems sympathetic, but as yet has made no definite statements about whisking Snowden away.