Posted: Jun 24, 2013 11:16 AM by Associated Press
MOSCOW (AP) - There's continued confusion about the whereabouts of National Security Agency leaker Edward Snowden.
He'd booked a seat on a flight from Moscow to Cuba today, but the plane apparently took off without him. Russia's Interfax news agency cited a source as saying Snowden could have flown out in a different plane, unseen by journalists.
Others speculated that Russian security agencies might want to keep him in Russia for a more thorough debriefing.
He hasn't been seen since he arrived in Moscow yesterday from Hong Kong. He'd been hiding there for several weeks to evade U.S. justice.
The founder of the WikiLeaks secret-spilling organization, Julian Assange (ah-SAHNJ'), says he can't go into details about where Snowden is, but that he is safe.
At the White House, spokesman Jay Carney says the U.S. assumes that Snowden is still in Russia. He says the White House expects Russian authorities to look at the options available to them to expel Snowden so he can face charges in the United States.
Interfax quoted an unidentified "well-informed source" in Moscow saying that Russia has received a U.S. request to extradite Snowden and responded by saying it will consider it. But the same source said that Russia can't detain and extradite Snowden since he hasn't crossed the Russian border. By remaining inside the Moscow airport, Snowden would not have had to officially enter Russian territory by going through passport control.
Snowden had been expected to fly to Cuba and Venezuela today on his way to possible asylum in Ecuador. That's the country that has given Assange refuge in its embassy in London.
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