Portuguese MEP asks Donald Trump to grant presidential pardon to Edward Snowden

Francisco Guerreiro is one of 26 subscribers to an open letter that supports the intention admitted by the President of the United States to grant presidential pardon to the former CIA consultant who revealed in 2013 how the NSA and other agencies monitor the communications of millions of people around the world.

Piaras Ó Mídheach / Web Summit

Portuguese MEP Francisco Guerreiro is one of 26 members of the European Parliament who signed an open letter in which they ask the President of the United States, Donald Trump, to grant Edward Snowden the presidential pardon. The former CIA consultant has been held in Russia since June 23, 2013, avoiding arrest by US authorities for revealing how the federal agency NSA and other associated entities manage to monitor the communications of millions of people. people, businesses and governments around the world.

Following recent statements by Trump in which the US president admitted the possibility of pardoning Edward Snowden, on which charges of treason under the Espionage Law fall, as well as theft of federal government property, which would allow the Upon their return to the United States, the 26 MEPs express “full support” for the eventual presidential pardon. And they point out that the former CIA consultant revealed the “potential threat to the rights of Americans and foreigners” due to the level of surveillance by the United States government.

“This case underlined the crucial role of whistleblowers in protecting fundamental rights and preserving our democratic principles. Our common objective of building a transparent and responsible society is violated every time those who place the public interest above their well-being and personal security are legally accused ”, reads the letter signed by Francisco Guerreiro, in which he is remembered that in 2015 the European Parliament demanded that Snowden be protected and called on all Member States to drop any pending charges and guarantee protection, preventing them from being extradited or captured and taken to their home country.

Despite Trump's intentions, who in some cases referred to Snowden as "a spy who should be executed," United States Attorney General William Barr assured the Associated Press that he would oppose any attempt at presidential pardon. "The information he provided to our adversaries greatly undermined the safety of the American people," said the official, although the CIA consultant, now 37, was known to reveal to journalists Glenn Greenwald, Laura Poitras and Ewen MacAskill thousands of classified documents from the NSA, which gave rise to a series of articles in the newspapers "The Guardian" and "The Washington Post".

In addition to the MEP elected by the PAN - People, Animals, Nature, but who currently has independent status within the group of the European Free Green Alliance, the document was signed by three vice-presidents of the European Parliament - the Czech Marcel Kolaja (of the Party Pirate), the Finnish Heidi Hautala (of the Green League) and the Italian Fabio Castaldo (elected by the 5 Star Movement, but not registered) - and by the former Catalan rulers Carles Puigdemont, Antoni Comín and Clara Ponsati, elected after flee their country, avoiding being arrested and tried by the Spanish state for involvement in the referendum not recognized by Madrid that led to Catalonia's declaration of independence on October 27, 2017.

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