Snowden's Russian asylum could be extended

Friday 11 July 2014 15.45
Mr Snowden leaked details of massive US intelligence-gathering programmes
Mr Snowden leaked details of massive US intelligence-gathering programmes

Fugitive US intelligence contractor Edward Snowden could have his request to extend his asylum in Russia agreed within a week, according to a senior migration service representative. 

"Snowden's life is still in danger, so the Federal Migration Service has every basis to extend his status," the head of the service's public chamber, Vladimir Volokh said. 

"It can be dealt with in the course of a week," said Mr Volokh.

Snowden's Russian lawyer said on Wednesday that he had already filed a formal request to extend Mr Snowden's one-year asylum beyond 31 July.

He did not say for how long Mr Snowden wanted to extend his stay, which status he was seeking or whether he wishes to become a Russian citizen.

Mr Snowden who leaked details of massive US intelligence-gathering programmes has been in Russia since flying in from Hong King in June last year.

He could not travel onwards however after his passport was revoked.

Mr Snowden was holed up in the transit zone of a Moscow airport for weeks before Russia granted him a one-year refugee status.

He had applied for asylum in other countries and has said he would like to go home, where he faces espionage charges that could lead to a lengthy prison term if he is convicted.

Keywords: russia, snowden