Snowden Gives Up on Plan to Stay in Russia, Kremlin Says
Edward Snowden has abandoned his effort to seek asylum in Russia after President Vladimir Putin warned that he would have to stop leaking information about U.S. surveillance programs if he wanted to stay, a Russian official said Tuesday.
The anti-secrecy group WikiLeaks said it had submitted asylum requests to 19 more countries for Snowden, the ex-National Security Agency computer contractor who has admitted providing secret documents on surveillance programs to reporters.
Snowden has been holed up at Moscow’s Sheremetyevo International Airport for more than a week.
“Snowden did voice a request to remain in Russia,” Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said Tuesday, according to the Russian news agency Ria Novosti. “Then, yesterday, hearing President Putin outline Russia’s position regarding the conditions under which he could do this, he withdrew his request for permission to stay in Russia.”