Putin says Snowden needs to leave Russia
So, NSA leaker Edward Snowden says he’s applied (again) to Russia for asylum, but the Russians say they haven’t received his request. Russian president Vladimir Putin said several days ago Snowden was welcome in Russia, if he would only pipe down about leaking intel about the NSA.
Putin reiterated those remarks while meeting with some archaeology students on Monday.
“We suggested to him: ‘If you want to stay you are welcome, but you must stop your political activities’,” he said, smiling. “‘We have certain relations with the United States and we don’t want you to harm our relations with your activities.’”
“He said: ‘No, I want to continue my activities, I want to struggle for human rights, I believe the United States is violating certain international legal norms, interfering in private life and today my goal is to fight it.’”
Putin and the students chuckled as he said: “We said: ‘Only without us. We have other things to fight with.’”
In other words, “you’re on your own, mofo.”
Snowden has been holed up in the transit zone of Moscow’s international airport for nearly two weeks, casting about for a country that will grant him political asylum. Nicaragua and Venezuela have agreed, but without a valid US passport or assistance from Russia, he is stuck in the airport.
Clearly not the sharpest tool in the shed of spies.
More: Putin Hoping Edward Snowden Leaves Russia as Soon as Possible