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Snowden Asks to Stay in Russia

FILE - Edward Snowden.
FILE - Edward Snowden.

Former National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden has applied to renew his political asylum status in Russia.

The temporary political asylum Snowden received last July was good only through midnight Thursday.

A lawyer in Russia representing Snowden said he can stay in the country at least until there is a decision on his application, and perhaps longer.

Russian authorities declined to say anything about an application, declining even to confirm an application from Snowden.

The American fugitive fled to Hong Kong in May 2013 where he published details about U.S. surveillance programs before continuing on to Moscow.

Snowden’s application to remain in Russia comes as Moscow's relations with the West are near a low point after the Russian annexation of Crimea and the downing of Malaysia Flight 17 over Ukraine.

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