Russia extends Edward Snowden’s residency until 2020

Russia extended its residency permit for former NSA contractor Edward Snowden until 2020, paving the path for him to acquire Russian citizenship. 

Russia has extended the residency permit for Edward Snowden, a former contractor for the National Security Agency (NSA) who received asylum in Russia in August of 2013, until 2020.

Wanted in the US for espionage crimes after leaking thousands of documents on the NSA’s tactics of surveillance, many have hailed Snowden as a heroic figure uncovering unconstitutional surveillance techniques on the part of the US government.

Snowden’s lawyer Anatoly Kucherena told Russia’s RIA Novosti news agency that Snowden is on the path to acquiring Russian citizenship.

“In effect, he now has all grounds to receive citizenship in the future, over the course of a certain period, since under the law we have a period of residence on Russian soil of not less than 5 years (to receive Russian citizenship),” said Kucherena.

“Now he has already been living on Russian territory for nearly four years, he does not violate the law, there are no complaints about him,” he continued. “That’s one of the reasons his residency permit was extended.”

By: Jonathan Benedek, World Israel News