2013-12-17 Snowden to Seek Asylum in Brazil

NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden, currently living in Russia, has agreed to cooperate with Brazil in investigating the actions of the notorious US signals surveillance agency, and is asking political asylum from Brazil in return.

'Many Brazilian senators have asked my help with their investigations into suspected crimes against Brazilian citizens', said Snowden in an open letter to the people of Brazil. 'Until a country grants permanent asylum, the US government will continue to interfere with my ability to speak.'

Today, if you carry a cell phone in São Paulo, the NSA can track where you are, and does. When a person in Florianopolis visits a website, the NSA keeps a record of when it happened and what you did on that site. If a mother in Porto Alegre calls her son to wish him luck on an exam, the NSA can save the recording of the call for five years or longer.

Snowden regards the unlimited surveillance of the NSA 'the biggest human rights challenge of our times'.

The NSA and other allied intelligence agencies tell us that, for the sake of our own 'safety' - in the name of Dilma's 'safety', in the name of Petrobras' 'safety' - they revoked our right to privacy and invaded our lives. And they did not ask permission of the people from any country, not even their own.

Previous Offers of Asylum

Bolivia, Nicaragua, and Venezuela have already offered asylum to Snowden, but Snowden now says he'd prefer being in Brazil.

'Brazil is the ideal place because it is a politically strong country where the revelations had a real impact', says David Miranda.

Glenn Greenwald adds that it's only logical for the government of Dilma Rousseff to protect Snowden if they want his cooperation in their investigations into the NSA.

The Price to Pay

But there is a price to pay, and Snowden says he has understood this from the beginning.

The price of my speech was my passport, but I would pay again. I prefer to be stateless rather than lose my voice.

Read more here.

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