Edward Snowden’s lawyer Anatoly Kucherena said on Tuesday that there is hope as President Donald Trump may drop the case against him. The lawyer also stated that the president may halt Snowden’s exile in Russia through clemency. Kucherena said that Russian officials have already prolonged Snowden’s residence permit until 2020.
Pardon Edward Snowden: Hope for Clemency
Kucherena said that they are hopeful that the Trump would make a thoughtful move on the issue of pardoning Snowden. The lawyer stressed that the president might make the correct decision and put an end to Snowden’s prosecution. In addition, he said that the former NSA contractor loves his country and longed for it.
“The way I see it, he [Donald Trump] would gain far more authority if he saw to it all insinuations about Edward Snowden were brought to an end,” Kucherena said. Furthermore, he stated that when Barack Obama was in power, Snowden’s case was entirely politicized. Kucherena mentioned about the extension of Snowden’s exile in Russia.
However, Russian citizenship would take five years, so naturalization chances would totally taken off the list, said International Business Times reported. “Under the existing Russian legislation, if he wishes so, he can apply for getting the citizenship after the elapse of five years,” the lawyer stated. “So far, this term has not yet expired and it is premature to speak about this.”
The lawyer stated that the issue of citizenship is within his competence. Moreover, it was Snowden’s decision whether to stay further or put forward the idea of getting Russian citizenship. On the other hand, the U.S. government said earlier that they consider Snowden to be a traitor. They also stated that he would not be forgiven, TASS News Agency reported.
Pardon Edward Snowden: Urging Europe to Act
Another legal representative working for the former NSA contractor, Wolfgang Kaleck, asked European nations to accept Snowden. The German lawyer talked about this during a hearing at the European Parliament. He had urged European nations to “open its arms” to Snowden.
Kaleck also stated that the thousand-year sentence awaiting Snowden in America is entirely conflicting to European standards. Kaleck made the request after former President Obama refrained from pardoning the whistleblower. The European Parliament gave a non-binding resolution, which indicated that Snowden will not be returned to the U.S. if he is in Europe. The resolution also called Snowden a whistleblower and a defender of human rights. However, Snowden has not yet formally opted for Europe.
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