Snowden pleads for safe passage to Germany – to help Merkel with her phone trouble
NSA squealer Edward Snowden has offered to pop over to Germany to help investigate allegations that Chancellor Angela Merkel’s phone was tapped by US spies.
German Green Party MP Hans-Christian Stroebele met Snowden in Moscow, Russia for three hours on Thursday – the lawmaker said on his website [in German].
The two men discussed the possibility of the one-time US spy agency IT contractor-turned-whistleblower assisting a German parliamentary inquiry into whether Merkel’s phone had been snooped on by stateside spooks.
Snowden offered to come to Berlin, Stroebele said, but added that certain “conditions” would need to be considered to guarantee that Snowden – who is currently enjoying temporary asylum in Russia – would be granted a safe passage to Germany if such a visit is approved by the country.
Stroebele told Reuters that Snowden “made it clear he knows a lot and that as long as the National Security Agency blocks investigations… he is prepared to come to Germany and give testimony, but the conditions must be discussed.”
Snowden, who now has an IT support job at a major, unnamed Russian website, leaked evidence of mass surveillance being carried out by operatives at the National Security Agency in the US and in Britain’s listening nerve centre – GCHQ.
He is wanted by US authorities over espionage charges.
Germany’s parliament will convene a special session on 18 November where the alleged surveillance of Merkel’s phone will be discussed. Some MPs want Snowden to give evidence at the inquiry – but it’s possible that he could do so via a video link from Moscow. ®