The father of former National Security Agency analyst Edward Snowden has arrived in Moscow in hopes of meeting with his son, who has been given asylum in Russia.
Lon Snowden arrived at the Moscow airport, where the younger Snowden spent more than a month in limbo before being granted asylum, on Thursday. Edward Snowden has been charged in federal court in the United States for violations of the Espionage Act after leaking details of U.S. government surveillance programs.
The elder Snowden told reporters Thursday that he hopes to see his son during his visit to Russia but does not know what Edward Snowden's plans for the future are. He said he is not sure whether his son would return to the United States, but said he has "extreme gratitude" that Edward Snowden is "safe, secure, and free" in Russia.
"I cannot speak for my son and really the legal issues. I'm his father and I don't want to really share my opinions at this point in time. I'm simply thankful that my son is safe and free," said the elder Snowden.
Lon Snowden was met at the airport by Anatoly Kucherena, Edward Snowden's Russian lawyer.
The younger Snowden was held at the Moscow airport starting June 23, when he arrived on a flight from Hong Kong with a revoked U.S. passport. He was allowed to leave the airport August 1 after obtaining temporary asylum in Russia, despite protests from the United States. His whereabouts in Russia have not been made public.