Maduro rejects U.S. extradition request for Snowden
Thursday, July 04, 2013 - 01:31
July 4 - If Edward Snowden winds up in Venezuela, President Nicolas Maduro says he would reject a U.S. request to have the former intelligence analyst extradited. Deborah Gembara reports.
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While Fourth of July celebrations were underway at the U.S. embassy in Moscow, Edward Snowden is believed to still be at a Moscow airport --- his temporary home while he searches for a country to grant him assylum.
Complicating matters for the former intelligence analyst who leaked details about the U.S surveillance program is the fact that Washington is warning foreign governments that accepting him could damage relations --- a point that didn't seem to concern Venezuelan President Nicolar Maduro who earlier in the week said Snowden deserves protection
SOUNDBITE: Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro saying (Spanish):
"The government of the United States presented to our foreign ministry, as we were flying in, a scrap of paper requesting the extradition of the young (Edward) Snowden...They do not have the moral right to request the extradition of a young man who is only warning of the illegalities committed by the Pentagon and the CIA and the United States. As head of state, I reject any request for extradition. They (the U.S.) are simply disregarding bilateral agreements."
Some expect Snowden to approach Venezuela for asylum in the coming days. His requests to others countries including Germany, Poland, Brazil and Italy have been rejected while others say a query would have to be made in person --- difficult since Snowden's passport has been revoked.
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