Edward Snowden, the fugitive whistleblower who has been given refuge in Russia, is willing to return to the United States if he is given a fair trial, his lawyer said Tuesday.
“He is thinking about it. He has a desire to return and we are doing everything we can to make it happen,” Anatoly Kucherena, the Russian lawyer who represents the former National Security Agency contractor, told a news conference.
Snowden was given political asylum in Russia in the summer of 2013 after the US revoked his passport. He now leads a reclusive life there.
“With a group of lawyers from other countries, we are working on the question of his return to America,” Kucherena said.
“Snowden is ready to return to the States, but on the condition that he is given a guarantee of a legal and impartial trial,” he said.
The lawyer said Snowden had so far only received a guarantee from the US Attorney General that he will not face the death penalty.
He said that Snowden is able to travel outside Russia since he has a three-year Russian residency permit, but “I suspect that as soon as he leaves Russia, he will be taken to the US embassy.”
Kucherena’s comments came at a presser where he presented a thriller loosely based on his encounters with Snowden.
US filmmaker Oliver Stone has bought the rights to the book as he prepares to shoot a biopic about Snowden starring Joseph Gordon-Levitt.