Zee Media Bureau
Moscow: After a Russian lawmaker tweeted that NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden had accepted Venezuela’s asylum offer, WikiLeaks on late Tuesday denied the report saying that the announcement would be made at the “appropriate time”.
Clarifying on Snowden’s asylum issue, the whistleblower website WikiLeaks posted on its twitter account a statement saying, “The states concerned will make the announcement if and when the appropriate time comes. The announcement will then be confirmed by us."
However in another tweet, WikiLeaks said, "Tomorrow the first phase of Edward Snowden`s `Flight of Liberty` campaign will be launched. Follow for further details."
WikiLeaks’tweets came in response to the tweets by Russian lawmaker Alexei Pushkov, who has acted as an unofficial point-man for the Kremlin on the Snowden affair.
He, yesterday, tweeted that NSA leaker had accepted Venezuela`s offer of political asylum. But he deleted the tweet soon after and posted another tweet saying his claim was based on a report from the state all-news television channel Vesti.
However, no such information could be found on Vesti`s website and no Russian news agency reported that Vesti had reported it. The TV channel could not immediately be reached for comment.
The Kremlin also declined comment on Tuesday`s developments.
Snowden, whose passport has been revoked by the US, lies stuck in a legal limbo in the transit zone of Sheremetyevo, where he arrived from Hong Kong on June 23.
There are no direct flights between Moscow and Caracas. The quickest way to get to Venezuela would be to fly via Havana.
A spokeswoman for Russian national carrier Aeroflot, Irina Danenberg, said she was not aware if Snowden had been on the flight to Havana that left Moscow earlier today.
"I have no clue," she said.
There are no direct flights to Havana from Moscow on Wednesday.
With Agency Inputs