After two years in Moscow, Edward Snowden has received the Russian authorities’ permanent permission to stay.
According to a statement from the Federal Migration Service (FMS), Russia granted Mr. Snowden asylum in Russia in 2013 after he gave media outlets internal documents from the NSA. His asylum period expires in 2017 and Russian authorities have chosen to extend it.
The court has issued a decree in the name of the president of the FMS to increase Mr. Snowden’s permanent residency permit from the number of 30 days he had when his asylum began, to the number of one year and 10 days in Russia. A lawyer representing Snowden told The Moscow Times that the procedure had been completed, and that there had been no problems with the visa system.
Mr. Snowden applied for asylum in Russia on July 31, 2013. Soon afterwards, Russia’s Federal Security Service (FSB) detained him at Moscow’s Sheremetyevo airport and questioned him about the grounds for his request.
The documentary broadcast earlier this month by Russia 24, “Edward Snowden: The Manhunt”, contained reports and interviews with Mr. Snowden.
Mr. Snowden has been living in Moscow’s Sheremetyevo airport, where he obtained political asylum, since June 23, 2013.
The visa must not be more than one year and 10 days, which is the period from the date of application for Mr. Snowden’s asylum, and from the time of announcement of his arrival at the airport.
The condition is apparently sufficient for Mr. Snowden to remain in Russia under the agreement made with the American authorities and Russia, to whom Mr. Snowden wants to visit. His stay in Russia is also one year, which means he could stay in the country for the next 11 months, which is not a long time.
Under the agreement, Mr. Snowden’s residency permit has to be renewed every one year or one day.
According to RIA Novosti, the Russian authorities received a request from Mr. Snowden for his permanent residency permit earlier this year, and still planned to renew it.