SELIGER, July 29 (RIA Novosti) – The security of former National Security Agency (NSA) contractor Edward Snowden is still topical, his Russian lawyer Anatoly Kucherena said Tuesday.
“If I had a possibility to organize a meeting with him, I would do it, but not now, as the issue of security is still on table,” Kucherena told participants of the Seliger International Youth Forum.
The lawyer said Snowden’s move is worthy of respect.
“I know his feelings, his relation to life, to people and to parents. He is a very noble man. This is the proof that he acted so not because it came to his mind. No. He acted so as he knew what was happening,” Kucherena said.
Kucherena gave no details on the term of Snowden’s temporary asylum in Russia that is set to expire on July 31.
Earlier this month, Snowden applied for an extension on his stay in Russia.
Snowden received temporary asylum in Russia for one year last summer on August 1, 2013, after living in the transit zone of Moscow’s Sheremetyevo international airport for a month.
Snowden fled his country in June 2013, after leaking information about the extensive electronic surveillance programs conducted by the US government around the globe, including eavesdropping on American citizens and foreign leaders. The revelations have sparked domestic controversy and strained relations between the US and its partners worldwide.
The United States accused Snowden of theft, unauthorized communication of national defense information and willful communication of classified documents to an unauthorized person. Each of the three charges carries a maximum possible prison term of ten years.
US authorities have rejected claims that Snowden is a whistleblower, insisting that he committed crimes and should stand trial at home. The US charged Snowden with espionage and revoked his passport.