Putin grants Russian citizenship to whistleblower Edward Snowden

President Vladimir Putin has granted Russian citizenship to whistleblower and former US National Security Agency employee Edward Snowden, who has been a refugee in Russia since 2013 after leaving the United States, according to a decree issued on Monday.

Mr. Snowden’s name appears along with dozens of others in this decree posted on the Russian government’s website.

Edward Snowden, 39, is wanted by the United States for sending to the press tens of thousands of documents from the US National Security Agency (NSA) that prove the extent of Washington’s electronic surveillance.

These discoveries then raised very high tensions between the United States and its allies, and the decision of the Russian authorities to grant him a residence permit angered Washington.

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told RIA Novosti news agency that Snowden was granted Russian citizenship at his request.

For his part, the whistleblower’s Russian lawyer, Anatoly Kucherina, specified that Mr Snowden would not be affected by the order to mobilize for the attack in Ukraine, which Vladimir Putin issued last week to certain categories of Russians.

“He did not serve in the Russian army, and therefore, according to our current legislation, he does not fall into this category of citizens who are now called up,” he told RIA Novosti.

According to him, Snowden’s partner, Lindsey Mills, has also applied for Russian citizenship and their daughter has already obtained it, having been born in Russia.

Edward Snowden, who was denied his US passport at the request of Washington, found himself in Moscow in May 2013 after arriving there from Hong Kong and intending to seek asylum in Latin America. He eventually found himself stuck in Russia, where he was granted asylum.

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About the Author: Hermínio Guimarães

"Introvertido premiado. Viciado em mídia social sutilmente charmoso. Praticante de zumbis. Aficionado por música irritantemente humilde."

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