National Security Agency leaker Edward Snowden has not yet formally accepted an asylum offer from Venezuela, according to WikiLeaks. The announcement was made today to put to rest confusion over whether Snowden had accepted Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro‘s offer.
“WikiLeaks, which has provided logistical help for Snowden since he fled the United States, issued the statement in a tweet.
“It was responding to an earlier tweet in Russian sent — then quickly deleted — by Alexei Pushkov, the head of the Russian parliament’s foreign affairs committee.
“Later Tuesday, WikiLeaks issued a cryptic tweet stating that on Wednesday ‘the first phase of Edward Snowden’s “Flight of Liberty” campaign will be launched. Follow for further details.'” – USA Today
“Snowden has applied for asylum in a number of countries, and it’s not clear just how easy it would be for him to travel to South America from Moscow, where he’s still believed to be holed up in the airport.
“For Snowden to go to Venezuela, he would need for that country to issue him travel documents. And then he’d have to find a way to get there.
“The only direct commercial flight from Moscow stops in Havana and goes over Europe and the United States, which could cause complications. Some European countries refused to let Bolivia’s president fly through their airspace on his way home from Moscow last week because of suspicions that Snowden was on his plane.” – Politico.com
According to Irishtimes.com: “Russian President Vladimir Putin has said Mr. Snowden should choose a final destination and go there as soon as possible, but it is unclear how he would get to any of the Latin American countries that have offered him asylum.”
Snowden, who worked as a contract employee at the NSA has been on the run from the United States since early June.
It remains to be seen if he will accept the asylum offer from Venezuela or from one of the South American nations that have issued similar offers.