U.S. revokes Snowden’s passport, sources say

An anonymous government source says Snowden's passport is no longer valid, according to the the AP and ABC News

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U.S. revokes Snowden's passport, sources say FILE - In this June 21, 2013 file photo, a banner supporting Edward Snowden, a former CIA employee who leaked top-secret documents about sweeping U.S. surveillance programs, is displayed at Central, Hong Kong's business district. The Hong Kong government says Snowden wanted by the U.S. for revealing two highly classified surveillance programs has left for a "third country." The South China Morning Post reported Sunday, June 23, 2013 that Snowden was on a plane for Moscow, but that Russia was not his final destination. Snowden has talked of seeking asylum in Iceland. (AP Photo/Kin Cheung, File) (Credit: AP)

Edward Snowden has had his U.S. passport revoked, according to a government official who spoke to the Associated Press on condition of anonymity.

The source says that Snowden’s passport was annulled on Saturday, though it remains unclear if this happened before or after he departed Hong Kong for Russia.

ABC News is also reporting Snowden’s passport was revoked:

A State Department Operations Center alert said Snowden’s U.S passport was revoked Saturday after the Justice Department finally unsealed charges on Friday that had been filed in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia on June 14, ABC News has learned.

“Consul General-Hong Kong confirmed Hong Kong authorities were notified that Mr. Snowden’s passport was revoked June 22,” the State Department’s senior watch officer informed top officials in a new message.

But whether the U.S. embassy was able to tell Hong Kong in time before Snowden fled, or whether the Chinese officials simply were eager to wash their hands of him and let him go, remains unclear.

A State Department spokesperson said they did not have a comment at this time.

The lack of a valid passport could make travel to his reported destination of Ecuador difficult, but not impossible, the source told the AP. If a senior official in Russia ordered it, Snowden could board his next flight without incident.

 

 

 

Katie McDonough is an assistant editor for Salon, focusing on lifestyle. Follow her on Twitter @kmcdonovgh or email her at kmcdonough@salon.com.

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