Russian authorities have not yet issued a visa for the father of NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden, awaiting an official green light from the country’s foreign ministry.
“The fact is that Lon Snowden still does not have a valid Russia visa,” said a source close to the elder Snowden, as cited in a report by Russian state news agency ITAR-TASS. “When Lon’s lawyers asked for an explanation at one of the Russian consular offices, the response was that Russian Foreign Ministry needs to issue a sanction, which was not done yet, and only then a visa can be issued.”
The development, however, comes despite earlier statements by Lon Snowden and his lawyer Bruce Fein in mid-August on an ABC News broadcast that they had obtained Russian visas and would travel there in a near future.
Although the source could not point to specific reasons for the visa delay, he reiterated that the elder Snowden continues to seek a Moscow visit and appears eager to see his son.
This is while the younger Snowden, a former employee of major US spy agencies, the CIA (Central Intelligence Agency) and the NSA (National Security Agency), who is now considered a US fugitive for leaking top secret spying operations, is awaiting his father’s visit and hoping to discuss his future plans with him.
The junior Snowden, meanwhile, is busy “traveling across Russia” and learning about Russian customs and traditions, according to local media reports, citing his Russian lawyer Anatoly Kucherena.
The NSA whistleblower can reportedly even speak some Russian, and according to Kucherena, is able to pronounce some words “very clearly.”
His lawyer is further cited as saying that he has also received “job offers” but has not yet decided accept any.
Russian authorities granted Snowden a temporary asylum over fierce US objections, allowing him to enter Russia on August 1.
His current residence, however, has not been publicly revealed, “nor will it be,” Kucherena says.
By Press TV
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