REUTERSRussia will allow National Security Agency (NSA) whistleblower/leaker Edward Snowden to move freely in Russia during the examination of his application for temporary asylum, state-owned news agency RIA Novosti reports.
Snowden will reportedly be given a special certificate that can be used as an identifying document since his passport was revoked by the U.S.
"If a decision on the review petition on the merits, the applicant is issued a certificate of [identification]," a source told RIO Novosti (Note:translated by Google). "It is a document that certifies the identity of the applicant, and gives him the right to stay in Russia for the entire review period."
Russia Today reports that t he Russian Migration Service has confirmed it has received whistleblower Edward Snowden’s application for temporary asylum, and notes that he may be moved to a refugee center.
Snowden, 30, has been living in the the transit area of Moscow's Sheremetyevo airport since June 23.
RIA notes that the preliminary review of the application will take up to five days, and the full examination up to three to six months. The presidents of Bolivia, Nicaragua, and Venezuela have offered the former CIA technician asylum, and on Friday he accepted those offers.
Russian human rights lawyer Anatoly Kucherena told RT that Snowden said he is seeking asylum in Russia because he fears for his life.
"He is being pursued by the US government – that’s what he wrote, I am quoting – and he fears for his life, safety, that he will be tortured or receive the death penalty,” Kucherena said, adding that Snowden filled out application on Monday, but only handed it over to the FMS on Tuesday.
The former CIA technician has leaked the first concrete evidence of the NSA dragnet surveillance on Americans, as well as NSA spying activities on citizens all over the world.
The ex-Booz Allen employee also has access to the documents that constitute "the instruction manual for how the NSA is built," according to Guardian journalist Glenn Greenwald.
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