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Updated: July 3, 2013 14:02 IST

Snowden rightfully charged in courts: US

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A TV screen shows the news of whistleblower Edward Snowden, at a restaurant in Hong Kong. File photo
A TV screen shows the news of whistleblower Edward Snowden, at a restaurant in Hong Kong. File photo

Rejecting allegations of political vendetta, the U.S. has said Edward Snowden is rightfully charged by its courts for espionage and leaking classified information and Washington is making diplomatic efforts to ensure he is brought back to face those charges.

“Snowden has been lawfully charged in U.S. courts. As routine matter persons with felony arrest warrants are subject to having their passport revoked. He remains a U.S. citizen. We welcome him back to the U.S. to face the charges against him, in accordance with due process and U.S. law,” the State Department spokesperson, Jen Psaki, said at her daily news conference.

A day earlier, Mr. Snowden had sought asylum in as many as 21 countries including India, Russia, Germany and China.

India, Brazil and Poland are the three countries which have rejected his request, while many others are either reluctant or have put conditions, prompting analyst to conclude that he is running out of options.

“I’m not going to get into a list or specific country-by-country. We have been in touch, as we have been for several days now, with a broad range of countries that could serve as either transit spots or final destinations,” Ms. Psaki said.

“What we’ve been communicating is, of course, what we’ve been communicating publicly, that Mr Snowden has been accused of leaking classified information. He is somebody that we would like to see returned to the U.S., of course. We are hopeful that that will happen,” she said.

The focus is on returning or communicating the reasons why Mr. Snowden should be returned to the United States and face charges here, she said.

“I’m not going to get into what we’re communicating to different countries. Every country has their own laws, and I would refer you to any of them. I know many of them have been talked about publicly. But we have been very clear, and we feel the same way today, that he should be returned here. He would be tried as a US citizen under the allegations he’s been accused of,” Ms. Psaki said.

“The case we’re making publicly is what we’re also making privately, that he is somebody who has been accused of leaking classified information, he remains a U.S. citizen, his right place is to be returned to the U.S. to be tried here,” she said.

Ms. Psaki, refrained from answering questions on India denying the asylum request to Mr. Snowden.

“I’m just not going to get into specific countries. I know there’s a lot happening at one time and again, we’ve just been communicating with a range of countries that could be both a stopover and a final destination,” she said.

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Edward Snowden, a man facing planet without a visa. Really it is matter
of great courage to show, in these times when people are more
entertained and less informed.

from:  Ahsan
Posted on: Jul 3, 2013 at 23:10 IST

Most of the people are not able to understand that US spying on other
countries not to identify terrorists but to make the countries secrets
to use for its own advantage.Like if you are going to make a bid what
is your position when the other party already know what bid you can

This is what US is doing with other countries at international forums
and trade negotiations etc.This is not legitimate and is against the
Vienna convention. Snowden has done commendable job by exposing such a
huge scandal.

What is more shameful is that India instead of condemning the act ,is
supporting US on the reasons which are unbelievable. Once again UPA
government has shown to the world how vulnerable it is to the US and
making Non-Alignment movement still laughable since India is engaged
with that.

from:  Veera Reddy
Posted on: Jul 3, 2013 at 16:30 IST

I can't understand why people are all talking about privacy, what NSA will listen your home quarrel or they will listen your love talk, simply they don't business this, they moniter those people suspected ,for the safety of general public,terrorist are using cyber in such a way nobody can imagine,and now a day it has become difficult to identify good and bad people,the best example the recent marathon attack at Washington.No country can belive other, it's totally for nation interest and for security of it's citizen.

from:  Rahesh
Posted on: Jul 3, 2013 at 14:10 IST

Some of our readers who think Snowden is a criminal by US law should first consider what appears in an OP-ED in the article titled "India's cowardly display of servility" - "If these allegations are true, then the U.S. has violated Article 22 of the 1961 Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations, of which it is a signatory. That article notes, “The premises of a diplomatic mission, such as an embassy, are inviolate and must not be entered by the host country except by permission of the head of the mission. Furthermore, the host country must protect the mission from intrusion or damage. The host country must never search the premises, nor seize its documents or property.” The nature of the spying, with bugs on crypto-fax machines and on communications cables, clearly breaches the protections enshrined in the convention."

Mr. Edward Snowden is a whistleblower. What he has removed from US property is mere proof that his nation has indulged in illegal activity.

from:  B S Kumar
Posted on: Jul 3, 2013 at 12:37 IST

Only because of bravehearts like Snowden or Manning we are coming to know of the shenanigans of the Noble laureate Obama. Hail Snowden! Therefore, he joining NSA despite signing obvious non-disclosure agreemnt is perfectly understandable.It is the servile Indian Govt. led by the insipid Doctorate that should be ashamed for rejecting Snowden's request. The only technical mistake Snowden must have done is that he should have learnt from plight of Assange and arranged his asylum beforehand. Now, as becasue it is Russia that's why the US cannot get onto an Osama like Behind Enemy Line Op. Any country with an iota of righteousness should invite Snowden to its soil. Now since that is not the case Snowden should go undercover in the vast Easterns of Russia, Mangolia, China, North Korea or Iran and thereafter LatAm. I only wish all the best for Snowden. May there be many Snowdens and Mannings and Assanges.

from:  abhijit
Posted on: Jul 3, 2013 at 12:16 IST

@Arun subbu : what snowden was fighting for is privacy of individual
above all his nations confidential information to not be disclosed . As
I read in yesterdays comment from one of the readers as Gandhiji said
doing a unlawful thing to expose a wrong thing is right

Posted on: Jul 3, 2013 at 12:00 IST

What US is doing is right. Snowden has signed several no-disclosure agreements before he joined the job - so if he chose to leak them, then he has to face the consequences.

Nobody forced him to join NSA; nobody forced him to sign NDA's - so why is everyone crying out loud when USA takes action against a rogue agent who leaked its State secrets ?

from:  Arun Subbu
Posted on: Jul 3, 2013 at 11:33 IST

I have noted that the international media covering the whistleblower's
story is disproportionately heavy on the dramatic turns of Snowden's
predicament, hardly about any serious loss by leakage for the US-UK
governments. Like potshots with ballyhoo at the messenger, conspicuously
coy about the message.
Frankly, I find it a bit strange and smelly.

from:  Rajan Mahadevan
Posted on: Jul 3, 2013 at 11:19 IST

I don't understand why we don't see Mr Snowden as criminal. He has leaked the classified information. If he considers himself an innocent then why he's fearful of US laws. Whistle blowing is not a crime and I don't see this act as whistle blowing!! It is same as if someone from our Army leaks the secret information to Pakistan and then we defend him. Snowden is a culprit and we must not support him. If he was not satisfied with his job then he could have left that but doing such a cowardice is really very pathetic. We must understand that what America is doing is for fighting the Terror but not terrorizing the general public.

from:  Dr. Avinash Kumar
Posted on: Jul 3, 2013 at 11:09 IST

Mr. Snowden should probably try Noth Korea.

from:  Manoj Warrier
Posted on: Jul 3, 2013 at 09:39 IST

Snowden is only a whistle blower, and Obama administration is targeting whistle blowers. It is clear that the U.S. NSA agency's engagement in secret spying is far more serious crime than Snowden exposing govt's abuse of power. It is the U.S. govt. - not the U.S. people - that is trying to victimize him.

from:  Thomas G
Posted on: Jul 3, 2013 at 09:32 IST
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