Politics

Iran ally Ecuador says it would consider Snowden asylum request

Josh Peterson Tech Editor

Should National Security Agency whistle-blower Edward Snowden decide to seek asylum from the U.S. government, Ecuador is now one of several options he has.

“Mr. Snowden may ask the Ecuadorian government for asylum, if he wants, and of course we will examine his request, as we did with Assange (WikiLeaks founder),” Ecuadorian Foreign Minister Ricardo Patino told Ecuadorian media, English.news.cn reports.

Ecuador also granted asylum to Julian Assange, founder of Wikileaks. Assange has been held up in the Ecuadorian Embassy in London since June 19, 2012 in an attempt to avoid extradition to the U.S.

The Washington Free Beacon reported on May 28 that Center for a Secure Free Society pegged Ecuador as “one of Iran’s largest money-laundering hubs in Latin America.”

Economic and commercial ties between Quito, Ecuador and Tehran have strengthened over the past several years as well.

Snowden is currently hiding out in Hong Kong as the U.S. government pursues a criminal investigation into his actions.

Russia would also consider an asylum request from Snowden, should he send a proper request to the Kremlin.

Reuters reported on Monday that Iceland “has received an informal approach from an intermediary” for Snowden. Snowden has made it known since he first revealed himself that Iceland was his preferred destination.

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