Brazil denies Edward Snowden's request for asylum

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Brazil: No request from Snowden yet
Rio de Janeiro, June 3: The Brazilian foreign ministry on Monday denied that US intelligence contractor-turned-whistleblower Edward Snowden has formally requested Brazil for asylum.

In an interview aired by local TV station Globo on Sunday evening, Snowden, whose temporary asylum in Russia expires in August, said that he had requested asylum from Brazilian government, and he would be happy to live in Brazil if the government approves his request, Xinhua reported.

Brazilian Foreign Minister Luiz Alberto Figueiredo said on Monday that officials have not received his petition.

"If the request arrives, it will be analysed, but it has not arrived," the minister said.

Snowden worked for the US National Security Agency (NSA) until he decided to blow the whistle on the agency's covert global surveillance programmes, which appeared to also target Brazil.

His revelations showed the US monitored the e-mails and phone calls of millions of ordinary Brazilians, as well as Brazil's President Dilma Rousseff, her top aides and the state oil and gas giant Petrobras.

The US government has justified its global spying network, citing security threats, but has also indicated it may scale back the dimensions of its monitoring.

IANS

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