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Snowden leaves Hong Kong for Moscow: Report

Press TV

Former National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden who blew the whistle on the United States’ global spying programs is en route from Hong Kong to Moscow heading to a third destination.

“U.S. whistleblower Edward Snowden has left Hong Kong on an Aeroflot flight to Moscow, credible sources have confirmed to the South China Morning Post,” the Post reported Sunday.

“Moscow will not be his final destination,” the paper, which has conducted exclusive interviews with Snowden in Hong Kong, said.

Iceland has previously said it was ready to grant political asylum to Snowden.

Snowden’s departure came despite a U.S. arrest warrant and extradition request to authorities in Hong Kong. On Saturday, the White House contacted Hong Kong to arrange his extradition back to the U.S.

But Honk Kong said Washington’s documents did not “fully comply with the legal requirements under Hong Kong law.”

Legal experts have said that any attempt by the U.S. to extradite Snowden from Hong Kong could be a years-long legal process and can be blocked by mainland China.

Federal prosecutors have charged Snowden with espionage for exposing secret U.S. spying programs run by the NSA.

He was charged with conveying classified information to an unauthorized party, disclosing intelligence information, and theft of government property. The charges, each of which carries a potential ten year prison term, were filed in a federal court in Alexandria, Va.

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