Ecuador are not considering asylum for whistleblower

By Danielle Middleton topicIcon Internet News

Ecuador is not considering Snowden's asylum

It has been speculated that wanted whistleblower Edward Snowden has sent asylum requests to up to 21 countries, following revelations that his application to Ecuador is in doubt.

Snowden fled to Hong Kong on 10 June after revealing secrets about the US Government which he discovered during his time as a CIA technician. Ecuador aided Snowden's passage from Hong Kong to Russia, but have since stated that administering the temporary travel pass was an error.

Unacceptable to bug friends

Snowden fled the US following the controversial revelation of PRISM and that the US had been spying on allies in the EU, sparking outrage from Chancellor Merkel of Germany and the French President, Francois Hollande. France demanded the activity "cease immediately", while the Chancellor stated "bugging friends is unacceptable".

The documents leaked by the 30-year-old ex-CIA technician, revealed that the US had been using the PRISM surveillance programme to monitor the online activity of citizens, as well as spying on 38 foreign ministers in the European Union's Washington nerve centre.

Snowden has been holed up in Russia's Sheremetyevo airport since leaving Hong Kong on 22 June, but has been unable to enter the country as he has not been granted the proper documentation. It has been reported that Snowden has sought asylum in several countries including: France, Germany, Brazil, China, Russia, India and Ireland.

Ecuador's error

Ecuador, whose London Embassy is currently sheltering Wikileaks founder Julian Assange, is not offering asylum to Snowden and has said that issuing the travel documents in order for him to leave Hong Kong was unauthorised.

The Ecuadorian President Rafael Correa has said: "That we are responsible for getting him to Ecuador? It's not logical. The country that has to give him a safe conduct document is Russia."

The South American country will not grant Snowden's request unless he is on Ecuadorian soil, saying his situation is such a complicated one since he has "spied for some time". Of the error which occurred in the country's London Embassy; Correa stated that it was in a vulnerable position at the time with several Ambassadors out of the country, and that Navarez and Assange took matters into their own hands to save Snowden's life from US capture.

Rachel Hand, head of content at theEword said: "As the fallout from PRISM continues internet surveillance remains a topic of international debate.

"Any country that accepts Snowden's asylum request will potentially be making a big statement that could undermine their relationship with the US."