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NEW YORK TIMES: Edward J. Snowden, the former National Security Agency contractor, said in an extensive interview this month that he did not take any secret N.S.A. documents with him to Russia when he fled there in June, assuring that Russian intelligence officials could not get access to them. Mr. Snowden said he gave all of the classified documents he had obtained to journalists he met in Hong Kong, before flying to Moscow, and did not keep any copies for himself. He did not take the files to Russia “because it wouldn’t serve the public interest,” he said. “What would be the unique value of personally carrying another copy of the materials onward?” he added. He also asserted that he was able to protect the documents from China’s spies because he was familiar with that nation’s intelligence abilities, saying that as an N.S.A. contractor he had targeted Chinese operations and had taught a course on Chinese cybercounterintelligence. “There’s a zero percent chance the Russians or Chinese have received any documents,” he said. […]
Mr. Snowden said he had never considered defecting while in Hong Kong, nor in Russia, where he has been permitted to stay for one year. He said he felt confident that he had kept the documents secure from Chinese spies, and that the N.S.A. knew he had done so. His last target while working as an agency contractor was China, he said, adding that he had had “access to every target, every active operation” mounted by the N.S.A. against the Chinese. “Full lists of them,” he said.
“If that was compromised,” he went on, “N.S.A. would have set the table on fire from slamming it so many times in denouncing the damage it had caused. Yet N.S.A. has not offered a single example of damage from the leaks. They haven’t said boo about it except ‘we think,’ ‘maybe,’ ‘have to assume’ from anonymous and former officials. Not ‘China is going dark.’ Not ‘the Chinese military has shut us out.’ ” MORE
CNN: Edward Snowden’s father expressed satisfaction Wednesday with the way his son, the former National Security Agency contractor, has been treated since being granted asylum in August.Lon Snowden spoke to reporters at Moscow’s Sheremetyevo International Airport as he prepared to return to the United States after a six-day visit, his first reunion with his son since April. “I felt that this is the best place for him, this is the place where he doesn’t have to worry about people rushing across the border to render him,” Lon Snowden said. “It’s not going to happen here.” It may not be his last visit, since his son — charged in the United States for revealing a massive government surveillance campaign — may wind up remaining in Russia for years. “My feeling is that, unless the attitude within our government changes dramatically — and that at a minimum is going to require a change of administration and that’s going to be in several years — that Russia is the place for him to be at the current time.” MORE