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Edward Snowden's asylum requests

Traitor or not, fugitive Edward Snowden is being treated like one.

Though Venezuela, Bolivia and Nicaragua have opened their doors, many of the 21 identified countries to which he has appealed for asylum have shunned him. Some states have said no outright, while others have fallen back on requirements that asylum bids be made in person on national territory. Even countries where officials earlier suggested that Snowden should be treated as a human rights hero have been pulling back the welcome mat.

According to Wikileaks, Snowden sent out additional appeals for asylum to six unnamed countries, in a sign of the marooned fugitive's mounting desperation in the face of international indifference to his plight.

Select a country below to learn the status of Snowden's asylum request there.

— Carol J. Williams

Russia | Venezuela | Bolivia | Nicaragua | Ecuador | Cuba | Iceland | Austria | Finland | Ireland | Norway | Spain | Netherlands | Switzerland | Brazil | China | Germany | India | Poland | France | Italy

Russia: Temporary entry approved

The Russian Federal Migration Service has reportedly issued a certificate that allows Snowden to leave the transit zone of Moscow's Sheremetyevo airport, where he has been holed up for more than a month, and officially enter Russia. According to Russian media, entry will be allowed while his asylum application is considered, a process that typically takes up to three months.

The former NSA contractor resubmitted his request for asylum in Russia on July 12. He flew to the Russian capital from Hong Kong on June 23 after Chinese authorities allowed him to leave even though he had no valid passport.

Russian President Vladimir Putin said Snowden would be welcome to stay in Russia, but only if he refrained from leaking more classified information “aimed at inflicting damage to our American partners.”

Snowden withdrew his request for asylum in Russia after Putin’s conditions were announced but resubmitted it in his 19th day of being stranded in Sheremetyevo’s transit area, unable to enter or leave the country.

Venezuela: Asylum offered

Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro offered NSA leaker Edward Snowden political asylum on June 5, possibly the firmest offer of refuge the U.S. fugitive has received since exposing a massive program of surveillance of phone calls and emails in the United States and abroad.

The Venezuelan leader was in Moscow earlier this week but did not take the opportunity to bring Snowden back with him. Maduro made no mention of facilitating Snowden’s trip to Venezuela with either an aircraft or travel documents.

Bolivia: Asylum offered

Snowden was offered asylum by Bolivian President Evo Morales as the president vented his outrage over an incident in which European countries denied his plane entry into their airspace because of rumors that Snowden was on board.

Following a gas summit in Moscow, France and Portugal forced the plane to land in Vienna. Bolivian Foreign Minister David Choquehuanca told reporters in La Paz that Snowden wasn’t on the plane and denounced Paris and Lisbon for "this injustice."

Nicaragua: Conditional asylum offered

Nicaraguan President Daniel Ortega has said his government received an asylum request from Snowden and would be willing to grant it under the right circumstances.

"It is clear that, if the circumstances permit it, we will happily receive Snowden," Ortega said in a speech in Managua, "and we will give him asylum here in Nicaragua."

Ortega, once a leftist revolutionary leader who was a constant thorn in Washington's side, did not specify what circumstances he meant.

Ecuador: Status unclear

In an interview with Associated Press, Ecuadorean President Rafael Correa said Snowden must assume responsibility if he broke U.S. laws, although he said the broader legitimacy of Snowden's actions must be taken into consideration.

Correa said Ecuador would consider an asylum request, but only if Snowden is able to make it to Ecuador or an Ecuadorean embassy to apply.

Earlier, Ecuador announced its withdrawal from a 2-decade-old trade pact with the United States, saying the agreement left the South American nation vulnerable to "blackmail" as U.S. officials seek Snowden's return.

Cuba: No response

Cuba offered no immediate response to Snowden's petition.

The country has seen its long-strained relations with Washington warm slightly in recent years, and is considered unlikely to sacrifice that improvement just to add to the Obama administration's embarrassment over the Snowden affair.

Iceland: Ineligible

Iceland, like several other countries on this list, requires asylum bids to be made in person on national territory — a technical barrier that spares it having to make a decision.

Though Iceland has an extradition treaty with the U.S., it has been known to apply its own standards of justice in deciding whether to send a fugitive home to face criminal prosecution.

Austria: Ineligible

Austria, like several other countries on this list, requires asylum bids to be made in person on national territory — a technical barrier that spares it having to make a decision.

Finland: Ineligible

Finland, like several other countries on this list, requires asylum bids to be made in person on national territory — a technical barrier that spares it having to make a decision.

Ireland: Ineligible

Ireland, like several other countries on this list, requires asylum bids to be made in person on national territory — a technical barrier that spares it having to make a decision.

Norway: Ineligible

Norway, like several other countries on this list, requires asylum bids to be made in person on national territory — a technical barrier that spares it having to make a decision.

Spain: Ineligible

Spain, like several other countries on this list, requires asylum bids to be made in person on national territory — a technical barrier that spares it having to make a decision.

Netherlands: Ineligible

The Netherlands, like several other countries on this list, requires asylum bids to be made in person on national territory — a technical barrier that spares it having to make a decision.

Switzerland: Ineligible

Switzerland, like several other countries on this list, requires asylum bids to be made in person on national territory — a technical barrier that spares it having to make a decision.

Brazil: Application in effect denied

Brazil has in effect denied Snowden's asylum request with a government announcement that no petition response is planned.

China: Application in effect denied

China avoided having to make a decision on Snowden's asylum application by allowing the fugitive to flee Hong Kong for Russia, on June 23.

China has important trade and political ties with the U.S. that would have been damaged by granting asylum.

Germany: Application denied

Germany was one of the first countries to deny Snowden's asylum application.

Important trade and political ties with the U.S. would have been damaged by granting asylum.

India: Application denied

India was one of the first countries to deny Snowden's asylum application.

Important trade and political ties with the U.S. would have been damaged by granting asylum.

Poland: Application denied

Poland was one of the first countries to deny Snowden's asylum application.

Important trade and political ties with the U.S. would have been damaged by granting asylum.

France: Application denied

France, though concerned about U.S. surveillance disclosures, is a close U.S. ally. The two are fellow members of NATO and share concerns about the leaking of sensitive national security data.

France was one of the countries that refused to allow Bolivian President Evo Morales' plane to enter its airspace because Snowden was suspected of being on board, tipping its hand to the asylum question.

Italy: Application denied

Italy, though concerned about U.S. surveillance disclosures, is a close U.S. ally. The two are fellow members of NATO and share concerns about the leaking of sensitive national security data.

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