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Snowden Breaks Silence, Attacks Obama

Jeremy Fuster |
July 1, 2013 | 10:27 p.m. PDT

Executive Producer


(Creative Commons)
(Creative Commons)
National Security Agency leaker Edward Snowden made on Monday his first public statement since releasing classified documents about the NSA's PRISM surveillance program. In a brief statement posted on the anti-secrecy website WikiLeaks, Snowden attacked the Obama administration for pressuring other nations to deny him asylum after promises that there would be no "wheeling and dealing" over his case.


"This kind of deception from a world leader is not justice, and neither is the extralegal penalty of exile," Snowden wrote. "These are the old, bad tools of political aggression."


Snowden accused the Obama Administration of denying him his right to seek asylum in another country by revoking his passport, citing Article 14 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Snowden has sent requests for asylum to Ecuador after flying to Moscow from Hong Kong on June 23. Since then, he has been forced to stay in Moscow's Sheremetyevo airport, which is considered international territory. 


SEE ALSO | VP Biden Asks Ecuador To Deny Snowden Asylum


According to CNN, there are conflicting reports from Russian news agencies about whether or not Snowden has also sent asylum requests to Russia. WikiLeaks says that its legal advisor has sent asylum requests on Snowden's behalf to the Russian consulate and various embassies in Moscow. Russian President Vladimir Putin said he is willing to offer Snowden asylum, on the condition that he "stop his work aimed at harming our American partners."


But in a letter to Ecuador President Rafael Correa seen by Reuters, Snowden insisted that he was not done with releasing leaks, saying he was "free and able to publish information that serves the public interest."


Despite his situation, Snowden said in his statement that his resolve has not been shaken: 


In the end the Obama administration is not afraid of whistleblowers like me, Bradley Manning or Thomas Drake. We are stateless, imprisoned, or powerless. No, the Obama administration is afraid of you. It is afraid of an informed, angry public demanding the constitutional government it was promised — and it should be.

I am unbowed in my convictions and impressed at the efforts taken by so many.


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