Former U.S. intelligence analyst Edward Snowden has not yet communicated with the authorities of Venezuela or Bolivia in relation to the offer of political asylum they had offered him on Friday. Nicaragua also stated they would take the ex-CIA analyst but this tiny country has also not heard from Snowden.
Venezuelan Foreign Minister Elias Jaua reported that Venezuela has not yet received a response from Snowden on the offer to grant asylum made to him by President Nicolas Maduro.
In Bolivia, Bolivian Foreign Minister David Choquehuanca said July 7, 2013, Sunday, that his country also did not receive a request for asylum by the former CIA agent. President Evo Morales offered Snowden asylum for humanitarian reasons and to protest his ‘kidnapping’ and the no-fly airspace that prevented his plane from returning from Moscow, owed to the four European countries which blocked his plane on July 2 — they say, on suspicion that Edward Snowden might be on board.
Venezuelan leader, Nicholas Maduro stated that:
“If this young man is haunted by revealing a system of espionage … We’re on the right track to evaluate, consider and accept his application for asylum. I confirm the humanitarian spirit of granting asylum to Snowden in order to protect the young American from pursuit by the global empire” (http://www.elnuevoherald.com/2013/07/07/1516749/snowden-no-ha-respondido-a-ofertas.html).
Maduro announced last week he decided to refuse any request for extradition regarding Snowden that the U.S. government might make.
Venezuelan opposition leader Henrique Capriles cries fowl
The Maduro asylum offer was considered by the Venezuelan opposition leader Henrique Capriles as an action that would be used to distract attention from the problems facing the country of Venezuela.
Capriles said Friday on his Twitter account that:
“Nicholas, you stole the election, and giving asylum gives you legitimacy and makes people forget. (The) Asylum does not solve the economic disaster that is causing record breaking inflation, or the fact that another devaluation is coming, or the growing insecurity” (ibid).
Maduro won the election for president to succeed Hugo Chavez on April 14, 2013 by a very thin margin. Capriles has refused to concede defeat alleging fraud and has subsequently asked the Supreme Court to challenge the proceedings and call for new elections.
The problem Maduro could face as time goes on is that he not only won the election by a sliver, but he was never a member of the armed forces of Venezuela and thus unlike Chavez, any rancor within the armed forces caused by the CIA could help usher in a coup d’état. Instability, of course, is what the CIA is hoping and most likely working towards and this could be one reason that Snowden is considering his options.
Bolivia calls for international debate
The Bolivian Foreign Minister said the incident that forced Morales to divert his flight to Austria where he was stranded thirteen hours, “put into question” the international conventions that guarantee immunity to world leaders and the incident will lead an to an international debate to question and review international treaties.
The Bolivian Foreign Minister also stated:
“We have an opportunity to generate a lot of debate and President Morales will lead the debate” (ibid).
The debates are scheduled to be held in Ecuador and will include the ALBA nations: Antigua, Barbuda, Bolivia, Cuba, Dominica, Ecuador, Nicaragua, San Vicente, Las Granadinas, Surinam and Venezuela (http://sp.rian.ru/international/20130703/157453382.html).