This morning Edward Snowden did not show up for the "Aeroflot" flight that was intended to carry him from his current sanctuary, Russia, to Cuba. Due to a release from the Ecuadorian Government regarding Snowden's request for asylum, it was believed that Ecuador was the intended final destination for the NSA whistleblower.
Wikileaks' Julian Assange says Snowden left Hong Kong on June 23 bound for Ecuador via Russia and other states #breaking
— Reuters Top News (@Reuters) June 24, 2013
So where is Edward Snowden now? Here is what we currently know:
Snowden Missed His Flight to Cuba
Seats 17A and 17C on a flight between Moscow and Havana were left empty as the plane took off. The two seats were intedend for Edward Snowden and his new travel companion, Sarah Harrison, the attorney for Wikileaks. Russian publication Kommersant reported that the dozens of journalists also on the flight searched every compartment in the cabin searching for a hidden-Snowden but to no avail.
Standing next to Edward Snowden's seat on flight to Cuba. He ain't here. pic.twitter.com/NVRH3Pzved
— max seddon (@maxseddon) June 24, 2013
I hope the hacks on that flight to Havana will file interesting stories about Cuba before they leave.
— Ed Webb (@edwebb) June 24, 2013
Kommersant also speculates that Snowden may be leaving on the next flight to Havana which leaves on Tuesday June, 25.
People Believe His Final Destination is Ecuador
Edward Snowden could be continuing on his intended journey to Ecuador via Havana by another route or a more roundabout transportation route to avoid the press storm this morning's flight to Cuba caused.
Here is the tweet from Ecuadorian Foreign Minister Ricardo Piatino Aroca announcing Snowden's asylum request:
El gobierno del Ecuador ha recibido solicitud de asilo de parte de Edward #Snowden.
— Ricardo Patiño Aroca (@RicardoPatinoEC) June 23, 2013
Could Iceland or Venezuela Still be a Possibility For Snowden?
However, there is also a possibility that Snowden's brief association with the Ecuadorian diplomatic party may have been a ruse to conceal his real destination, Iceland. Snowden asked Iceland to consider granting him asylum early last week. Rumors also circulated yesterday that asylum in Venezuela might be Snowden's final destination.
The U.S. Government Blankets the World in Extradition Requests
Meanwhile, the United States government has been blanketing much of the world with extradition requests for the 30-year-old whistleblower. Hong Kong was issued one earlier this week, as was Russia, and a preemptive request was sent to Ecuador yesterday.
It's awful how Snowden is traveling through countries with no freedom! Now: back to our debate: should US journalists be arrested? #Sorkin
— Glenn Greenwald (@ggreenwald) June 24, 2013