EU to member states: Drop charges, protect ‘human rights defender’ Snowden …

30 Oct 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

EU hails Snowden as ‘human rights defender’.

US intelligence whistleblower Edward Snowden has hailed a European Parliament vote urging EU member states to take him in and offer protection as an “extraordinary” gesture of support.US traitor Edward Snowden could be given asylum in Europe after MEPs yesterday hailed him as a ‘human rights defender’ and offered protection against criminal charges in America. They agreed by just four votes: 285 to 281 – to drop all criminal charges against the man whose leak of secret material has helped terrorists escape and was likened to telling the Nazis about the Allies’ Enigma code-breaking project.

On Twitter, Mr Snowden, the former National Security Agency contractor who leaked millions of documents about electronic surveillance by the US government, called the vote a “game-changer.” But the resolution has no legal force and limited practical effect for Mr Snowden, who is living in Russia on a three-year residency permit. Snowden has been living in exile in Russia since June 2013 and faces US charges of espionage and theft of state property which could put him in jail for 30 years. He says he was doing his duty as a citizen by informing others about the surveillance programs which scooped up massive amounts of personal data in the name of national security.

The computer specialist was working at an intelligence centre in Hawaii in 2013 when he tricked colleagues into handing over passwords so he could copy 1.7million files in one of the biggest leaks in US history. Four Latin American nations have offered Mr Snowden permanent asylum, but he does not believe he could travel from Russia to those countries without running the risk of arrest, and then extradition to the United States along the way. Despite Ukip not voting on the motion, a spokesman for the party said: ‘The EU has laid no charges, the European Parliament has no place pontificating outside its brief.

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