BUENOS-AIRES, July 8 (RIA Novosti) - Cuba supports the governments of Venezuela, Bolivia and Nicaragua, which offered asylum to ex-CIA employee Edward Snowden, Cuban leader Raul Castro said.
Snowden, who is wanted by the US for leaking details of secret state surveillance programs, has submitted more than 20 requests for asylum. Most have been rejected, or countries have told the former National Security Agency contractor that he must be present on their soil to submit such an application.
“We express our support to the sovereign right of Venezuela and other countries in the region to grant asylum to those, who are persecuted for ideals or for the fight for democratic rights,” Cuban daily Juventud Rebelde quoted Castro as saying at a parliamentary session.
Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro announced on Saturday that Caracas would be willing to grant Snowden asylum. On Friday Nicaraguan President Daniel Ortega said his country would “receive Snowden with pleasure,” according to Sky News.
Also on Saturday, Bolivia became the third country to say that it would be prepared to offer political asylum to the fugitive intelligence expert.
Snowden arrived in Russia on a flight to Moscow from Hong Kong on June 23. The United States has revoked Snowden’s passport, and he is now believed to be holed up in the transit area of Moscow’s Sheremetyevo airport.