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Friday, 02 August 2013 09:49

US throws toys out of pram over Snowden

Written by Nick Farrell

Likely to cancel summit

A summit between the Russians and the Americans which was supposed to sort out the Middle East is at risk because the US is furious with Russia granting Edward Snowden a year’s asylum.

The White House signaled that President Barack Obama may boycott a September summit with President Vladimir Putin in Moscow. Putin's move aggravated relations with the United States that which were already strained by Russian support for Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.

Snowden plans to rent an apartment and find work in Russia, and had no immediate plans to leave. After all he is a high-level tech expert, and there are lots of companies who would give him a job. Snowden is under orders not to publish more information that could harm the United States at least until he leaves Russia.

Prominent U.S. lawmakers - Republicans and Democrats - condemned Russia's action and urged Obama to take stern retaliatory steps beyond the issue of the September summit. There are rumours that Obama might also consider a boycott of the G20 summit in Russia in September, immediately after the planned summit with Putin, or of the Winter Olympics, which Russia will host in the city of Sochi next February.

Nick Farrell

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