Hello! You are part of a community of millions who seek out Democracy Now! each month for ad-free daily news you can trust. Maybe you come for our daily headlines. Maybe you come for our in-depth stories that expose corporate and government abuses of power and lift up the voices of ordinary people working to make change in extraordinary times. We produce all of this news at a fraction of the budget of a commercial news operation. We do this without ads, government funding or corporate sponsorship. How? This model of news depends on support from viewers and listeners like you. Today, less than 1% of our visitors support Democracy Now! with a donation each year. If even 3% of our website visitors donated just $10 per month, we could cover our basic operating expenses for a year. Pretty amazing right? If you visit us daily or weekly or even just once a month, now is a great time to make a monthly contribution.

Your Donation: $

June 23, 2013 < Previous Entry | Next Entry >

Exclusive Video: WikiLeaks Lawyer Confirms Snowden Lands In Russia; Seeks Asylum in Unnamed Country

RSS
Edward_snowden2

Amy Goodman interviews Michael Ratner, lawyer for Julian Assange and WikiLeaks, about the breaking news that NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden has freely left Hong Kong and has flown to Russia. He is seeking asylum in an unnamed country. Ratner is president emeritus of the Center for Constitutional Rights.

"Apparently he left Hong Kong with no difficulty," Ratner says, confirming that he is now in Moscow. "Hong Kong government said that the warrant for his arrest issued by the United States was not valid. That he was free to leave."

"He is not a fugitive. At this point, there’s no warrant that we know of outstanding for his arrest. Any charges from the United States are apparently sealed," Ratner says. "He is seeking political asylum in another country. ... It is not public yet where he is going on to."

Major news outlets are reporting that Snowden has asked Ecuador for asylum. Ecuador’s foreign minister, Ricardo Patiño Aroca, confirmed the request on Twitter, "The Government of Ecuador has received an asylum request from Edward J. #Snowden."

“Edward Snowden is entitled to political asylum under the refuge convention. People who are persecuted for their political opinions are entitled to political asylum,” Ratner says.

"In this case, Julian Assange was granted political asylum because whistleblowers about government corruption and criminality of governments are often recognized as people entitled to political asylum," Ratner says. “Political asylum overrides any extradition.”

"This is a man who has taken on the United States and the massive surveillance ... and started an important debate. He is a hero and a whistleblower," Ratner says.

WikiLeaks issued this press release on Sunday, June 23:
"Mr. Edward Snowden, the American whistleblower who exposed evidence of a global surveillance regime conducted by U.S. and U.K. intelligence agencies, has left Hong Kong legally. He is bound for a democratic nation via a safe route for the purposes of asylum, and is being escorted by diplomats and legal advisors from WikiLeaks. Mr. Snowden requested that WikiLeaks use its legal expertise and experience to secure his safety. Once Mr. Snowden arrives at his final destination his request will be formally processed."

To watch all recent Democracy Now! reports on Snowden and the NSA surveillance program with other NSA whistleblowers, click here.

RSS

Recent Shows More

Full News Hour

Stories

    Peoplesclimatemarchjustseedsimage
    A People’s Climate Movement: Indigenous, Labor, Faith Groups Prepare for Historic March
    New York City is set to host what could be the largest climate change protest in history. Organizers expect more than 100,000 people to converge for a People’s Climate March on Sunday. Some 2,000 solidarity events are scheduled around the world this weekend ahead of Tuesday’s United Nations climate summit. We spend the hour with four participants representing the labor, indigenous, faith and climate justice communities: Rev. Dr. Serene Jones is the president of Union Theological Seminary, which recently voted to divest from fossil...