US whistleblower Snowden gets a Russian passport

Vladimir Putin granted Russian citizenship to the former US intelligence contractor in September



Edward Snowden speaks in Moscow in 2013. – AP file
Edward Snowden speaks in Moscow in 2013. – AP file

By Reuters

Published: Fri 2 Dec 2022, 8:05 PM

Former US intelligence contractor Edward Snowden, who exposed the scale of secret surveillance by the National Security Agency (NSA), has sworn an oath of allegiance to Russia and received a Russian passport, TASS reported on Friday.

"Yes, he got [a passport], he took the oath," Anatoly Kucherena, Snowden's lawyer, told the state news agency TASS.

Snowden, 39, did not immediately reply to a message seeking comment on the report.

President Vladimir Putin in September granted Russian citizenship to Snowden, who fled the United States after leaking secret files that revealed the extensive eavesdropping activities of the United States and its allies.

Defenders of Snowden hail him as a modern day dissident for exposing the extent of US spying. Opponents say he is a traitor who endangered lives by exposing the secret methods that Western spies use to listen in on hostile states and militants.


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