President Obama is not playing; he revoked NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden's passport, leaving him a man in limbo with no country to turn to. It is nearly impossible to travel anywhere in the world without a passport. Snowden is currently a guest of Russian President Vladimir Putin. Yesterday, Snowden withdrew his request for asylum in Russia because he didn't agree with Putin's rules. Putin had offered to grant Snowden asylum in Russia only if he stopped leaking Obama's secrets.
Snowden released a statement rebuking Obama for revoking his passport when he hasn't been convicted of a crime.
"Although I am convicted of nothing, (the United States) has unilaterally revoked my passport, leaving me a stateless person," Snowden said in the statement. "Without any judicial order, the administration now seeks to stop me exercising a basic right. A right that belongs to everybody. The right to seek asylum."
Snowden accused the Obama administration of making him an example to other potential whistleblowers.
"Their purpose is to frighten, not me, but those who would come after me," he said in his statement.
Snowden has applied for asylum in 20 countries but all have denied his applications. Officials in Austria, Finland, Germany, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Spain and Switzerland all said he cannot apply for asylum from abroad.
Snowden, a former CIA agent, originally fled to Hong Kong after leaking secret documents that proved the National Security Agency (NSA) was engaged in widespread spying of American citizens. He arrived in Russia from Hong Kong more than a week ago. Snowden had planned to seek asylum in Venezuela, via Cuba, because Venezuela has no extradition treaty with the U.S.
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