* US federal prosecutors are asking victims of the deadly Boston Marathon bombing whether they should pursue the death penalty against suspected terrorist Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, whom authorities accuse of carrying out the attack together with his brother, the Boston Herald reported
* The first woman to head the US Department of Homeland Security, Janet Napolitano, announced she will leave her cabinet post and head west to become the first woman to lead the 10-campus University of California (UC) system in its 145-year history
* Fugitive US intelligence contractor Edward Snowden said that he plans to ask Russia for temporary asylum “today,” in hopes of eventual safe passage to Latin America, and asked about a dozen prominent Russian lawyers and rights activists to support his request
* Russia’s Foreign Ministry reacted angrily to statements from US officials this week that Washington could expand the so-called Magnitsky List, a blacklist freezing the US assets and imposing travel bans on alleged Russian rights abusers
* The White House criticized Russia for providing a “propaganda platform” for fugitive US intelligence contractor Edward Snowden’s announcement that he would seek asylum in Russia, saying that US President Barack Obama and Vladimir Putin would address the standoff later in the day.
* A senior investigator said that 13 men, all ethnic Chechens, had been detained outside the small Russian town of Pugachyov, where a fatal stabbing has triggered nearly a week of angry anti-migrant protests