French parties join calls to give Snowden asylum


Snowden is currently in the transit zone of Moscow airport as he seeks to avoid an extradition order to the U.S., where he faces charges of espionage for disclosing information on the NSA's surveillance programs. On Monday he sought asylum in Russia, as Moscow and Washington looked for a way to end the standoff.

The Snowden affair has become a political weapon in Europe, with parties outside the corridors of power using it to hammer those in government, charging them with being subservient to the United States.

Marine Le Pen of France's far-right National Front agreed with the calls to grant Snowden refuge.

“Snowden has let the whole world know what the U.S. is doing, and he’s being hunted down for it,” she said, according to France 24. “If we don’t give this man political asylum, what use does political asylum serve?”

In response to the popular outrage, the French government has taken the lead in criticizing the NSA, with President François Hollande calling on the Obama administration to “immediately stop” spying on the EU.

In Germany, the leader of the opposition Green Party has also sought to make Snowden an issue three months before national elections, calling for the EU to give him asylum.

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