The press conference Friday morning by National Security Agency (NSA) whistleblower Edward Snowden, and his subsequent written statement accepting offers of asylum, now formalize his status as a recognized recipient of political asylum in five countries.
It is the position of the Government Accountability Project (GAP) that Snowden’s whistleblower status is now bolstered by political refugee status.
By threatening trade sanctions against countries abiding by international human rights standards, the US government is now violating Snowden’s right to seek and accept asylum under Article 14 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. This effectively creates an unprecedented global “No Fly Zone” for whistleblowers.
“The history of whistleblower prosecutions, along with these newest efforts by the US government, clearly demonstrate there are no safe, internal channels for Snowden. And now we know there are no safe external channels either,” stated GAP Executive Director Beatrice Edwards. “The US has now globalized its War on Whistleblowers.”
Douglas Kim is External Relations Officer for the Government Accountability Project, the nation's leading whistleblower protection organization.