Glenn Greenwald, the Guardian journalist who was first to publish the documents which Snowden gave to him, said in an interview that the American government should be careful in its pursuit of the former agency’s analyst.
“Snowden has enough information to cause harm to the U.S. government in a single minute than any other person has ever had,” Greenwald said in an interview in Rio de Janeiro with the Argentinean daily La Nacion.
“The U.S. government should be on its knees every day begging that nothing happen to Snowden, because if something does happen to him, all the information will be revealed and it could be its worst nightmare.”
The whistleblower, who is charged by the U.S. governmet with espionage, has been stranded at a Moscow airport since June 23, hoping to seek refuge in Russia until he can secure safe passage to Latin America, where several counties have offered him asylum, Reuters reports.
Greenwald supposed on Tuesday that the refugee would likely accept asylum in Venezuela, one of the Latin American countries that have made that offer.
Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro offered asylum to US intelligence leaker Edward Snowden a week ago, giving a possible escape route to the fugitive.
“As head of state, the government of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela decided to offer humanitarian asylum to the young American Edward Snowden so that he can live (without) … persecution from the empire,” Maduro said, referring to the United States.
President Maduro continued: “I announced to the friendly governments of the world that we have decided to offer this international human right to protect this young man.”
In his speech Venezuela’s Mr. Maduro described Mr. Snowden as a valiant rebel who deserves to be “protected by humanity” and praised the former security analyst for unmasking U.S. espionage efforts at home and abroad.
By the way, Russia was one of the countries on Snowden’s original list, but he withdrew his request after President Vladimir Putin said Monday that he could only stay in Russia if he “stopped his work aimed at harming our US partners.”
Yesterday President Obama spoke with Russian President Vladimir Putin amid escalating tensions between the countries over the former NSA contractor but it’s still unknown whether the two leaders had reached any agreement.
A brief White House readout of it later said, “The two leaders noted the importance of U.S.-Russian bilateral relations and discussed a range of security and bilateral issues, including the status of Mr. Edward Snowden and cooperation on counter-terrorism in the lead-up to the Sochi Winter Olympics.”
Snowden made an additional statement in a letter posted on a Human Rights Watch Facebook page.
“Never before in history have states conspired to force to the ground a sovereign President’s plane to effect a search for a political refugee,” Snowden was quoted as saying in the letter.
“This dangerous escalation represents a threat not just to the dignity of Latin America or my own personal security, but to the basic right shared by every living person to live free from persecution.”