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Norway: Trump’s new CIA director wants dissidents like me 'put to death', says Snowden02:22

Norway: Trump’s new CIA director wants dissidents like me 'put to death', says Snowden

Norway, Oslo
November 19, 2016 at 11:57 GMT +00:00 · Published

NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden said the touted new director of the CIA under the Trump administration believes that "dissidents such as myself" should be put to death, during a Q&A in Oslo in which he participated via video link from Moscow on Friday.

Snowden said that "under the new president, as the news today says, the new CIA director [Mike Pompeo] is an individual who believes that dissidents such as myself should be put to death, they believe that that is the appropriate solution to disagreeing with the government."

He also commented on the global role of the US government, stating: "I don't think it's controversial to say the United States government is the most powerful government in the history of the world. We have never seen a state with this much influence."

But he added that although the US government "has run a fairly ceaseless campaign of criticism and trying to get Americans and people around the world to see me as a terrible individual" there is an "extraordinary mass of individuals, whether it's at universities or on the Internet, that wants to hear that dissident view."

Snowden has been in self-imposed exile in Russia following his revelations that the NSA was using various computer programmes to monitor the digital correspondence of millions of US citizens and international leaders. In absentia, he has been charged with espionage by the US government, and faces arrest if he were to return home.

In 2013, Snowden leaked classified information from the NSA exposing the security agency's vast covert surveillance apparatus. He was granted asylum in Russia in June 2013 where he remains despite America calling for his extradition.

The Oslo Q&A took place as part of the international PEN day dedicated to imprisoned writers around the world.

Norway: Trump’s new CIA director wants dissidents like me 'put to death', says Snowden02:22
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NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden said the touted new director of the CIA under the Trump administration believes that "dissidents such as myself" should be put to death, during a Q&A in Oslo in which he participated via video link from Moscow on Friday.

Snowden said that "under the new president, as the news today says, the new CIA director [Mike Pompeo] is an individual who believes that dissidents such as myself should be put to death, they believe that that is the appropriate solution to disagreeing with the government."

He also commented on the global role of the US government, stating: "I don't think it's controversial to say the United States government is the most powerful government in the history of the world. We have never seen a state with this much influence."

But he added that although the US government "has run a fairly ceaseless campaign of criticism and trying to get Americans and people around the world to see me as a terrible individual" there is an "extraordinary mass of individuals, whether it's at universities or on the Internet, that wants to hear that dissident view."

Snowden has been in self-imposed exile in Russia following his revelations that the NSA was using various computer programmes to monitor the digital correspondence of millions of US citizens and international leaders. In absentia, he has been charged with espionage by the US government, and faces arrest if he were to return home.

In 2013, Snowden leaked classified information from the NSA exposing the security agency's vast covert surveillance apparatus. He was granted asylum in Russia in June 2013 where he remains despite America calling for his extradition.

The Oslo Q&A took place as part of the international PEN day dedicated to imprisoned writers around the world.

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