Story has been updated with new report that the necessary paperwork for Snowden to leave the airport has not been received yet.
After a month of living in limbo in the Moscow airport, NSA leaker Edward Snowden will finally be allowed to enter Russia, USA Today reports. The former defense contractor who has become a folk hero to some and a national security menace to others will finally get a change of clothes and change of venue after being holed up at the airport for the last month.
The Russian government has given Snowden a document that allows him to leave the waiting area of the Sheremetyevo airport “as long as there is no objection from border patrol,” according to an unidentified security source that spoke with the Russian news service RIA Novosti. The document is likely a result of the temporary asylum request Snowden filed in July 16 with the aid of his Russian lawyer, Anatoly Kucherena.
But subsequent to the USA Today report, The New York Times said that Kucharena had emerged from the airport indicating that the paperwork necessary for Snowden to leave the airport had not yet been received. “Concerning today’s situation, I spent lots of time working on the question today, and currently the question is not resolved,” he told reporters.
Russian officials are still deciding whether to grant Snowden permanent asylum there. Other countries have already offered that to him, including Nicaragua, Bolivia and Venezuela. Kucharena told RT.com that Snowden is considering permanent residency in Russia, getting a new job and settling down if the asylum is granted.
As of now, Snowden remains in Sheremetyevo airport.