Venezuela Is Waiting for Snowden

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While Edward Snowden's asylum quest was met with not unsubstantial rejection, the NSA whistleblower's asylum request is going smoothly so far with Venezuela, one of a handful of Latin American states seemingly opening their borders to the American. 

Here's what the country's president Nicolas Maduro had to say on Monday (via Al Jazeera): 

"We have received the asylum request letter. He will have to decide when he flies, if he finally wants to fly here...We told this young man, 'you are being persecuted by the empire, come here."

The country, along with Bolivia and Nicaragua, had earlier indicated that they'd grant asylum to Snowden if asked. On Monday, Venezuela acknowledged the receipt of his request for them to do so, bringing the whistleblower a plane ride away from a welcoming country. Meanwhile, the U.S. has already sent them their extradition request for Snowden, because it's always a good idea to get a little ahead of your work load. According to RT, Snowden's request reasons that: "it is unlikely I would receive a fair trial or proper treatment [in the US]," adding that a return home comes with the “possibility of life in prison or even death.” 

Now all Snowden has to do is get on a plane from Moscow (The Atlantic Wire's Philip Bump figured out those details for him in case he needs some tips), hope that Cuba's support comes with safe passage, in the likely event that the leaker's plane needs to stop in Cuba on the way to his final destination, and, you know, live in the country of his choice indefinitely. 

This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.