Snowden Gets Asylum, Leaves Airport

He can now stay in Russia for one year
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 1, 2013 7:26 AM CDT
Updated Aug 1, 2013 7:49 AM CDT
NSA leaker Edward Snowden is seen during his meeting with Russian activists and officials at Sheremetyevo airport, Moscow, Russia.   (AP Photo/Tatyana Lokshina, Human Rights Watch HO, file)

(Newser) – Edward Snowden has finally left the Moscow airport he's been calling home for more than a month now, after getting papers granting him temporary asylum in Russia. "I have just handed over to him papers from the Russian Immigration Service," Snowden's lawyer, Anatoly Kucherena, told Russian media. "They are what he needs to leave the transit zone." And while we've had false alarms in the past, an RT crew on the scene has confirmed that this time, Snowden has actually left the building.

"I already escorted him out of the airport into a taxi," Kucherena tells the Wall Street Journal, though he would not say where his client was headed from there. Snowden's asylum is good for one year, though in the past Kucherena has said the whistleblower is considering settling down there permanently. (Read more Edward Snowden stories.)

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