Russian Official: Snowden Accepts Venezuelan Offer

By: Associated Press
By: Associated Press
NSA leaker Edward Snowden accepted Venezuela

This photo provided by The Guardian Newspaper in London shows Edward Snowden, who worked as a contract employee at the National Security Agency, on Sunday, June 9, 2013, in Hong Kong. NSA leaker Edward Snowden claims the spy agency gathers all communications into and out of the U.S. for analysis, despite government claims that it only targets foreign traffic. (AP Photo/The Guardian, Glenn Greenwald and Laura Poitras)

MOSCOW (AP) -- NSA leaker Edward Snowden accepted Venezuela's offer of political asylum, according to the Twitter account of a Russian lawmaker with close ties to the Kremlin. However, the tweet disappeared a few minutes later.

It was not possible to immediately reach Alexei Pushkov, the head of the Russian parliament's foreign affairs committee who has acted as an unofficial point-man for the Kremlin on the Snowden affair, on Tuesday.

Snowden, who revealed details of a U.S. intelligence program to monitor Internet activity, came to Moscow's Sheremetyevo airport on June 23 and was believed to be headed for Cuba. But he did not board that flight and has not seen publicly since. He is widely believed to still be in the airport's transit zone.

The head of the Russian parliament's foreign affairs committee says Edward Snowden has accepted Venezuela's offer of political asylum.

Alexei Pushkov made the statement on his Twitter account Tuesday. The message did not clarify how he learned of Snowden's purported acceptance, but Pushkov has acted as an unofficial point-man for the Kremlin on the Snowden affair.

Snowden, who revealed details of a U.S. intelligence program to monitor Internet activity, came to Moscow's Sheremetyevo airport on June 23 and was believed to be headed for Cuba. But he did not board that flight and has not been seen since. He is widely believed to be still in the airport's transit zone.


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