Pell Center

The Pell Center for International Relations and Public Policy at Salve Regina is a multidisciplinary research center focused at the intersection of politics, policies and ideas.

Where in the world will Edward Snowden go?

Right now Snowden is playing the waiting game. The infamous NSA leaker partnered with WikiLeaks and filed for asylum in 21 different countries.  Currently camped in the transit area of Moscow’s Sheremetyevo International Airport, Snowden hopes to find a more permanent refuge from the espionage charges the United States have set on him. Here are the results of his efforts so far:

Snowden has been granted temporary asylum in Russia. He is allowed to remain there for up to one year. WikiLeaks posted that Snowden safely left Sheremetyevo in the company of WikiLeaks’ Sarah Harrison.

Snowden officially accepts asylum from President Maduro of Venezuela. Now the next question is, how will the fugitive travel from Moscow to Caracas?

Venezuela, Nicaragua, and Bolivia formally extend asylum to Snowden.
Cuba says they will support Snowden and consider offering asylum.


Also, although unconfirmed, WikiLeaks has rumored that Snowden filed for asylum in six more countries, but that they are keeping them a secret for fear of “attempted U.S. interference.”


RUSSIA Snowden filed for asylum but then withdrew the request after President Vladimir Putin stated that Snowden would have to “stop his work aimed at harming our American partners”2 in order to stay.
INDIA Denied his request
CHINA Have not received an official request.
AUSTRIA Requst not valid; applicants must reside in Austria and submit their requests in person.
BOLIVIA* President Evo Morales said he was willing to offer asylum.
BRAZIL Denied his request.
CUBA* Will support Snowden but has not yet offered official asylum.
ECUADOR President Rafael Correa considered the request and stated that Snowden would have to reach Ecuadorian territory for it to go any further. U.S. Vice President Joe Biden asked Ecuador to deny Snowden’s request.
FINLAND Do not consider his written request an official application, which must be filed inside Finnish territory.
FRANCE Has not received “any demands from Mr. Snowden” – President Hollande.1
GERMANY Asylum requests must be made from within the country but that there is small a possibility of acceptance from abroad.
ICELAND Asylum seeker must submit a request from an Icelandic territory.
IRELAND Denied confirmation that they had received a request. Irish law does require that asylum applicants reach the country’s borders before being considered.
ITALY Asylum seeker must submit his request from an Italian territory or border.
THE NETHERLANDS Asylum seeker must submit his request from Holland.
NICARAGUA* Will support Snowden and offered him asylum.
NORWAY Asylum seekers typically must file their request from inside the country.
POLAND Denied his request.
SPAIN Asylum seeker must submit his request from Spain or on its borders.
SWITZERLAND Asylum seekers must submit his request from Swiss soil.
VENEZUELA* President Nicolas Maduro said he was willing to offer asylum and that Snowden deserved protection. Waiting on confirmation of Snowden’s acceptance.

What do you think will or should happen to Edward Snowden?

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