Whistleblower Edward Snowden, who was given permanent residency by Russia, says he and his wife are seeking dual US-Russian citizenship so they can raise their son and visit family.
Snowden, a former CIA contractor who leaked classified data about mass surveillance of US citizens in 2013 from the National Security Agency, has been living in exile in Moscow since then to avoid being tried in the US on espionage charges.
His wife, Lindsay Mills, an American who has been living with him in Russia, said last week that they are expecting a child who will be born next month and will have Russian citizenship.
“After years of separation from our parents, my wife and I have no desire to be separated from our son. That’s why, in this era of pandemics and closed borders, we’re applying for dual US-Russian citizenship,” Snowden said on Twitter Monday.
“Lindsay and I will remain Americans, raising our son with all the values of the America we love — including the freedom to speak his mind. And I look forward to the day I can return to the States, so the whole family can be reunited,” he said in another post.
His lawyer, Anatoly Kucherena, said he will begin the paperwork process for getting Snowden a Russian passport soon.
“Edward has told me that their baby is expected to be born in December; considering that the baby will be entitled to Russian citizenship by the birthright, he also wants to be a citizen of Russia,” Kucherena said, according to the Interfax news agency.
Russia earlier this year eased its citizenship laws to allow foreigners to get a passport without having to renounce their citizenship to another country.
With Post wires
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