Russian government grants former NSA contractor Edward Snowden citizenship

Russian government grants former NSA contractor Edward Snowden citizenship
Edward Snowden in 2013 (Wikimedia Commons)

Former National Security Agency (NSA) Edward Snowden has been gone from the United States for nine years and has been avoiding U.S. authorities by staying in Russia. And Snowden may be able to avoid them permanently; according to CNN, the Russian government has “granted” him “citizenship.”

CNN reports that the Russian government’s decision was announced in “an official decree” that was “published on the Russian government portal” on Monday, September 26.

“Snowden, who admitted to leaking information about U.S. surveillance programs to the press, has been in Russia since 2013,” CNN notes. “He is facing espionage charges and up to 30 years in prison in the U.S. In November 2020, Snowden and his wife applied for Russian citizenship. He had been already given permanent residency in Russia.”

READ MORE: No spying needed: Why prosecuting Espionage Act violations is 'controversial and complicated'

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