Putin Lectures Obama and Privacy

Data surveillance is an acceptable measure if done within the law, Russia’s President Vladimir Putin told RT while visiting the channel in the capital.

“Such methods are in demand. But you can’t just listen to the phone call in Russia; you need a special order from court. This is how this should be done in civilized society while tackling terrorism with the use of any technical means.  If it is in the framework of the law, then it’s ok. If not it is unacceptable,” Putin said answering the question of RT’s Editor-in-Chief Margarita Simonyan. Commenting on Obama’s statement that “You can’t have 100 per cent security and 100 per cent privacy,” Putin disagreed, saying it is possible if done within the law.

Russia said it could consider the possibility of granting political asylum to 29-year-old Edward Snowden, if such request is made. The ex-CIA worker disclosed the existence of PRISM, the National Security Agency’s (NSA) massive data-mining surveillance program, to The Guardian.

“If we receive such a request, we will consider it,” President Vladimir Putin’s press secretary Dmitry Peskov said.

The whereabouts of whistleblower remain unknown after he checked out of a Hong Kong hotel. A day earlier Snowden revealed his identity to The Guardian newspaper.

Perhaps unsure of where to go, Russian President Vladimir Putin had a suggestion Tuesday: Come to Russia.

One politician from Russia, Alexei Pushkov, had this to say about Putin’s idea:

Promising Snowden asylum, Moscow takes upon itself the defense of people persecuted for political reasons … There will be hysteria in the United States. They recognize this as their right alone.

Other leaders have come forward and expressed similar support for granting Snowden asylum in Russia.


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