Fugitive former U.S. spy agency contractor Edward Snowden is seeking asylum in Ecuador, the Quito government said on Sunday, after Hong Kong let him leave for Russia despite Washington's efforts to extradite him on espionage charges.
In a major embarrassment for the Obama administration, an aircraft thought to have been carrying Snowden landed in Moscow, and the anti-secrecy group WikiLeaks said he was "bound for the Republic of Ecuador via a safe route for the purposes of asylum."
Ecuadorean Foreign Minister Ricardo Patino, visiting Vietnam, tweeted: "The Government of Ecuador has received an asylum request from Edward J. #Snowden."
Ecuador has been sheltering WikiLeaks' founder Julian Assange at its London embassy for the past year, and Ecuador's ambassador to Russia said he expected to meet Snowden in Moscow on Sunday.
Snowden, who worked for the U.S. National Security Agency in Hawaii, had been hiding in the former British colony, which returned to China in 1997, since leaking details about U.S. surveillance activities at home and abroad to news media.
Sunday, June 23, 2013
Snowden Seeks Asylum in Ecuador
Posted by Aurelius