04:14 GMT04 March 2021
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    US National Security Agency (NSA) whistleblower Edward Snowden is alive and well despite recent rumors of his death triggered by a mysterious Twitter message, the whistleblower's lawyer, Anatoly Kucherena, said Monday.

    MOSCOW (Sputnik) — Earlier, social media picked up on Snowden's Friday Tweet containing a cryptic 64-character code, prompting speculation on whether he is dead or disappeared with the code being triggered after he failed to log in after a certain period of time. On Sunday, journalist and Snowden's close associate Glenn Greenwald said in his Twitter that the whistleblower is fine. Snowden's original message appears to have been deleted from his Twitter account.

    "Again, we are seeing certain speculations about Edward Snowden. Of course, there probably are people interested in speculating on this matter who have been doing this for the last several years. I can authoritatively say that he is alive and well, he is living in Russia and is busy with his favorite work, and the appearance of certain codes in his Twitter does not mean that he is in danger of some sort. This is an attribute of his work and there is nothing bad about it," Kucherena told RIA Novosti.

    In 2013, Snowden started revealing classified documents pertaining to mass surveillance practices carried out by US authorities around the globe. The same year, Russia granted the whistleblower temporary asylum for one year. In August 2014, Snowden received a three-year residence permit to live in Russia.

    In the United States, Snowden faces up to 30 years in prison on charges of espionage and theft of government property.

    Kucherena has represented Snowden since 2013, continuing to do so without charge.


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