Russia Is Keeping Snowden
Eric Holder says he'd 'engage' with Snowden's lawyers
By Kevin Spak,  Newser User
Posted Jan 24, 2014 7:52 AM CST
This photo provided by The Guardian Newspaper in London shows Edward Snowden, who worked as a contract employee at the National Security Agency, on Sunday, June 9, 2013, in Hong Kong.   (AP Photo/The Guardian)

(Newser) – Edward Snowden is free to keep on enjoying Russian hospitality. Russia won't send Snowden back to the US, and will extend his asylum when the initial year it granted him runs out, the head of the Duma's Foreign Affairs Committee said today in Davos, according to CNN. In an online chat yesterday, Snowden said that returning to the US would be "the best resolution for the government, the public, and myself, but it's unfortunately not possible in the face of current whistleblower protection laws."

"There are so many holes in the laws, the protections they afford are so weak … that they appear to be intended to discourage reporting of even the clearest wrongdoing," he added. At around the same time, Eric Holder told MSNBC that if Snowden "wanted to come back to the United States and enter a plea, we would engage with his lawyers," Politico reports. But he added that they'd do the same for any defendant, and said that clemency was out of the question.