Snowden moved out of Sheremetyevo airport capsule hotel
“He [Snowden] spent several hours here, but he checked out long ago,” reporters were informed at the reception desk of Sheremetyevo’s Air Express Hotel in Terminal E.
According to the source with the hotel staff, a group of journalists settled down at this base hotel almost at the same time as Snowden did, but the whistleblower managed to avoid them.
Another informed source told Russia’s RIA-Novosti news agency Snowden still remains in the airport’s transit area.
A former CIA employee, Edward Snowden, believed to have been staying in the Sheremetyevo airport transit area, may have obtained a transit Russian visa that’s valid for 72 hours, a source that’s familiar with the situation has told the RIA-Novosti news agency.
If transit passengers have a ticket to fly to another destination, as well as visas to enter third countries they may get a transit Russian visa. If Snowden is in possession of such documents, he has the right for a transit Russian visa at a consular service, right at the airport, and he may have done this, the source said.
According to the RIA-Novosti news agency, Snowden has twice reserved tickets for the Moscow-Havana flight, for June 24th and 25th . But he was not found aboard the plane the first time, while reservation for Tuesday’s flight was removed just hours before the takeoff. A document allowing the entry to a third country could be a refugee document to enter Ecuador that the Ecuadorean authorities have given him, something the WikiLeaks whistle-blowing website, which provides Snowden with legal support, reported earlier.
Under Russian law, foreigners may get a transit Russian visa at Russian Foreign Ministry consular offices abroad, but in an emergency, they may likewise get such visas at the expressly set-up consular points at Sheremetyevo or Domodedovo airports.
The First Deputy Director of the FSB Russian Federal Security Service, Head of the Border-Guard Service Vladimir Kulishov has said that the former US special service agent Edward Snowden has not crossed the Russian border.
The Russian President Vladimir Putin said yesterday that Edward Snowden had indeed arrived in Moscow as a transit passenger.
According to Putin, Snowden’s arrival had not been agreed in advance with the Russian authorities.
But the WikiLeaks whistle blowing website claims that Snowden has no alternative to living at Sheremetyevo Moscow airport’s transit area.
The former CIA employee cannot buy a flight ticket because the US has revoked his passport. Nor can he cross into Russia, for the same reason.
The only way out is to receive asylum in a third country and ask for a refugee passport to be delivered to Sheremetyevo.
The former CIA employee Edward Snowden has had his passport revoked; he therefore cannot buy a flight ticket and is forced to remain at Sheremetyevo Moscow airport’s transit zone, a source close to the whistleblower has told the Interfax news agency.
Snowden’s US passport has been annulled, he carries no other documents proving his identity, so he is compelled to stay at the airport’s transit zone, since he cannot either enter Russia, or buy a flight ticket, the source said.
Former CIA employee Edward Snowden could remain in Russia for ever due to threats from Washington, the statement of the spokespersons of the WikiLeaks web-site reads.
Representatives of WikiLeaks also point out that this is not the Department of State’s best move.
Edward Snowden arrived in Moscow from Hong Kong last Sunday. On Monday he checked in for the flight Moscow-Havana but later could not be found aboard the plane.
Journalists decided to see if Snowden postponed his flight for one day but another attempt at seeing the US secret service whistleblower came to nothing.
NSA leaker Edward Snowden has given encoded files containing an archive of secret NSA files to several people, Guardian journalist Glenn Greenwald told The Daily Beast.
Snowden “has taken extreme precautions to make sure many different people around the world have these archives to insure the stories will inevitably be published,” Greenwald said.
He added that the files are “highly encrypted” and corresponding passwords to render them readable have not yet been distributed.
“If anything happens at all to Edward Snowden, he told me he has arranged for them to get access to the full archives,” Greenwald said.
Guardian journalist previously claimed that Snowden provided him with the archives of "thousands" of documents, dozens of which he considered to be newsworthy.
The drama involving NSA leaker Edward Snowden and the disclosure of classified information regarding the operation of U.S. special services will not be the last of its kind, says Igor Morozov, a veteran of the Russian Foreign Intelligence Service (SVR) and currently a member of the Federation Council international affairs committee.
"We can talk about a trend with some degree of certainty today. There is the case of WikiLeaks and its founder Julian Assange, who has been taking refuge at the Ecuadorian embassy in London for more than a year for fear of extradition. There is the case of Pvt. Bradley Manning, who has confessed to passing classified documents to the website WikiLeaks, and now we have Edward Snowden. It looks like these people will not be the last to disclose classified information on U.S. special services," Morozov said in a Tuesday interview with Interfax.
"These people position themselves as lone fighters and see their mission in informing society of unsanctioned access to people's private lives by special services," he said.
Snowden has done a civic deed, and his actions are motivated by the desire to defend human rights and freedoms guaranteed by the U.S. constitution, Morozov said.
"Snowden is a model of a U.S. citizen raised in respect for the right of inviolability of privacy, and from this viewpoint, he is a hero to many Americans, and this is why a movement in his defense is gaining momentum in the U.S., which already numbers dozens of thousands of supporters," he said.
Morozov pointed out that Snowden is acting not for financial gain. "And this circumstance is appealing to a lot of people. But, at the same time, making public unlawful actions of special services, Snowden has doomed himself to spend the rest of his life underground, because American special services will do everything possible and even impossible to find him and bring him to justice at home," he said.
Morozov suggested that Snowden is working with professionals who have carefully planned the route of his travel and will ensure his legal defense.
"The fact that the not unknown jurist Baltasar Garzon, who became famous after issuing an arrest warrant for former Chilean dictator Augusto Pinochet, is a consultant to WikiLeaks speaks for itself. This man thoroughly knows all nuances of international law," Morozov said.
There is a reason why Snowden has chosen the transit zone of the Sheremetyevo Airport, Morozov said. "In this transit zone, neither a passenger nor their luggage can be subjected to additional searches or inspections. Moreover, access to the transit zone is available only to someone with a special pass issued by the airport administration," Morozov said.
The Russian Justice Ministry has repeatedly invited the U.S. to conclude a bilateral extradition agreement or join identical international treaties, Morozov said. "However, all of our initiatives have remained unanswered," he said.
The White House on Tuesday urged Russia to expel former government contractor Edward Snowden without delay, saying Moscow has a "clear legal basis" for his expulsion.
White House National Security Council spokeswoman Caitlin Hayden said the legal bases for expelling Snowden are the status of his travel documents and the pending espionage charges against him.
"Accordingly, we are asking the Russian government to take action to expel Mr Snowden without delay and to build upon the strong law enforcement cooperation we have had, particularly since the Boston Marathon bombing," she said.
The White House insisted Tuesday that there was a clear, legal basis for Russia to expel fugitive leaker Edward Snowden, after President Vladimir Putin rejected earlier US demands.
"While we do not have an extradition treaty with Russia, there is nonetheless a clear legal basis to expel Mr. Snowden," National Security spokeswoman Caitlin Hayden told reporters.
Voice of Russia, Interfax, Reuters, AFP, RT, RIA