‘Most wanted on earth’: Give him to US principle unjust, unacceptable for Russia – Snowden’s lawyer

Anatoly Kucherena (AFP Photo / Kirill Kudryavtsev)
While calling on Russia to “return” Snowden, the US authorities have not yet filed any appropriate paperwork outlining specific charges or requesting the extradition of the former US intelligence officer, the refugee’s lawyer, Anatoly Kucherena told RT.

Kucherena once again highlighted the fact that Russia cannot extradite Snowden because there is no legal basis for such action.

“We cannot extradite him, because we do not have the law on extradition,” Kucherena said. Addressing the US authorities and their desire to see Snowden back on American soil, the lawyer urged them to “at least send a request specifying what Snowden stands accused of.  That way a man could defend himself.”

“All we hear from US are political accusations. Stop. Why don’t they start a legal proceeding?” Kucherena said, adding that the lack any official request and failure to send any official document explaining the reasons’ for revoking Snowden’s passport “is absolutely unacceptable action against Russia.”

In the meantime Snowden “is the most wanted man on earth” and the American efforts to have him repatriated are proof of that, Kucherena believes. “He is wanted just for telling the truth,” as Snowden remains convinced that it was his duty to tell the American public for the benefit of mankind.

Regarding the latest article in the Guardian which provides further details about the NSA’s XKeyscore surveillance system, Kucherena said that it does not interfere with President Putin’s request for Snowden to abandon whistleblowing activities damaging the United States.

“The appearance of an article in the Guardian cannot influence the petition of the asylum request,” the lawyer said stating that he has discussed the issue with his client and the information used in the publication was provided to the newspaper prior to his arrival in Moscow. Kucherena once again highlighted that Snowden has “given his word and promised to stop the whistleblowing activity aimed at United States.”

Edward Snowden (Tanya Lokshina / Human Rights Watch)

Speaking to the media, Snowden’s lawyer also said that he is planning to invite his client’s father to Russia who would be accompanied by a US lawyer. Earlier, Lon Snowden claimed that his son would be better off staying in Russia, because he won’t get a fair trial in the US.
 
The lawyer also stated that if Snowden is denied his asylum request, that decision can be appealed in court. In the meantime a certificate allowing the NSA whistleblower to leave Sheremetyevo Airport, where he has spent month, will be issued in the near future.

“The reasons that Snowden stated in his asylum petition, in my view are quite convincing,” therefore the Federal Migration Service have no grounds to deny his temporary asylum request, Kucherena told RT.

Earlier on Wednesday, Kucherena explained to the press that once allowed to leave the airport, Snowden would choose his place of residence and would be allowed to move freely in the country after being granted asylum. Meanwhile, the former NSA contractor has asked his lawyer for the complete works of the History of the Russian state by Nikolay Karamzin.

Edward Snowden has been staying in a Moscow airport since June 23, 2013. Russia’s Federal Migration Service (FMS) can take up to three months to consider an application which Snowden submitted earlier. If the application is accepted and Snowden is given the 12-month temporary asylum that enables him to leave the transit area of Sheremetyevo airport.