US intelligence leaker Edward Snowden has yet to reply to Venezuela’s offer of asylum, Venezuelan foreign Minister Elias Jaua told AFP on Thursday.
“Not yet,” Jaua said on the sidelines of a meeting of the Mercosur trade bloc in Montevideo when asked if Caracas had received a response to the offer.
He added that his government has had no contact with Snowden, who is believed to have been stranded at Moscow’s international airport since June 23.
Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro offered “humanitarian asylum” to Snowden last week and said Monday that it was up to the fugitive to decide if and when he wants to fly to Caracas.
A top Russian lawmaker close to the Kremlin, Alexei Pushkov, sparked confusion on Tuesday when he tweeted that Snowden had accepted Venezuela’s offer, only to delete his post 30 minutes later.
The WikiLeaks anti-secrecy website, which has been assisting Snowden, said after the tweet that the 30-year-old former National Security Agency contractor had “not yet formally accepted asylum in Venezuela.”