He fled to Moscow airport, where he has been holed up in the transit zone for weeks. While Snowden has received asylum from several Latin American countries, he needs the permission of Russian authorities to travel there after the U.S. revoked his passport.
Kucherena said earlier this week that Snowden had formally applied for temporary asylum in Russia and would honor President Vladimir Putin’s request to stop releasing information damaging to the U.S.
The dispute though threatens to sour U.S.-Russia relations, with the White House suggesting Tuesday that Obama could snub Putin and cancel planed one-on-one talks in Russia in September.
GOP Sen. Lindsey Graham (S.C.) earlier this week also told The Hill that he U.S. should consider boycotting the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia, if Moscow grants Snowden asylum.
Graham’s comments though were criticized by Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio), who called them “dead wrong” as well as by the White House and U.S. Olympic Committee.
Kucherena also said that Snowden still had not made plans to leave Russia and had not ruled out applying for permanent residency there in the future, according to a report from Reuters.