Snowden Seeking Asylum in Ecuador

Foreign minister, WikiLeaks confirm the move
By Polly Davis Doig,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 23, 2013 11:49 AM CDT
Updated Jun 23, 2013 12:14 PM CDT
Ecuador Envoy at Moscow Airport to Meet Snowden
An undated image of Edward Snowden.   (AP Photo/The Guardian, Ewen MacAskill)

Edward Snowden will head to Ecuador to seek asylum, WikiLeaks is confirming. "He is bound for the Republic of Ecuador via a safe route for the purposes of asylum, and is being escorted by diplomats and legal advisers from WikiLeaks," the group said in a statement today. Ecuador's ambassador to Russia had earlier arrived at a hotel at Moscow's airport, where Snowden apparently landed this morning, and told Reuters he would meet with the NSA whistleblower. "We're waiting for Sarah," said Ambassador Patricio Alberto Chavez Zavala, referring to WikiLeaks rep Sarah Harrison, who is traveling with Snowden. "We're going to talk to them." Ecuador's foreign minister, Ricardo Patiño Aroca, later tweeted that, "The Government of Ecuador has received an asylum request from Edward J. #Snowden."

Business Insider takes a look at Harrison, who is Julian Assange's top adviser, a UK journalist, WikiLeaks editor, and legal researcher who might seem an odd choice to accompany Snowden given her lack of legal qualifications. But WikiLeaks has confirmed her presence, saying in a statement: "Miss Harrison has courageously assisted Mr. Snowden with his lawful departure from Hong Kong and is accompanying Mr. Snowden in his passage to safety." (Read more Edward Snowden stories.)

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