Edward Snowden leaves Moscow airport

The whistle-blower has acquired refugee status in Russia

Published August 1, 2013 12:34PM (EDT)

NSA whistle-blower Edward Snowden's time in limbo at a Moscow airport terminal has reportedly come to an end, as the 30-year-old has acquired refugee status in Russia, according to WikiLeaks.

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Reuters reported:

His lawyer, Anatoly Kucherena, told state television: "I have just seen him off. He has left for a secure location ... Security is a very serious matter for him."

Snowden, 30, arrived in Moscow from Hong Kong on June 23. He had hoped to fly to Latin America, where three countries have offered to shelter him, but was concerned that the United States would prevent him reaching his destination.

Russia Today via Twitter posted confirmation based on an image of Snowden's passport, stamped with his newly acquired refugee status:

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By Natasha Lennard

Natasha Lennard is an assistant news editor at Salon, covering non-electoral politics, general news and rabble-rousing. Follow her on Twitter @natashalennard, email nlennard@salon.com.

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Related Topics ------------------------------------------

Asylum Edward Snowden Nsa Refugee Russia Whistleblower Wikileaks