The President of Russia, Vladimir Putin has granted Russian citizenship to former U.S. security contractor Edward Snowden, according to a decree signed by the President recently.
Snowden is among the 75 foreign nationals listed by the decree as being granted Russian citizenship. The decree was published on the official government website.
Snowden, a former contractor with the U.S. National Security Agency, has been residing in Russia since 2013 to avoid prosecution in the U.S. after he leaked classified documents detailing government surveillance programs.
In 2020, he was granted permanent residency and said at the time that his plan was to apply for Russian citizenship, without his U.S. citizenship renounced.
While talking to Russia’s state news agency RIA Novosti, Snowden’s lawyer, Anatoly Kucherena, disclosed that the former contractor’s wife Lindsay Mills, an American who has been living with him in Russia, will also apply for a Russian passport.
Snowden, who has laid low in Russia and criticized Russian government policies on social media occasionally, said in 2019 that he would be willing to return to the U.S. if he’s guaranteed a fair trial.
He hasn’t talked about being granted Russian citizenship.
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