Bill in Iceland Parliament Would Give Snowden Citizenship Immediately

Published:3:13 pm EDT, July 4, 2013| Updated:5:23 pm EDT, July 4, 2013|
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Iceland Government Introduce Bill to Grant Edward Snowden Asylum

A bill has been put before the Icelandic Parliament designed to grant immediate citizenship to NSA leaker Edward Snowden, reports Icelandic news.

Ögmundur Jónasson, the left-wing member of parliament who was one of the politicians who introduced the bill, as well members of the Pirate Party, said due to Snowden's efforts to expose human-rights violations, he deserves citizenship and safe-asylum. This proposal comes one day before the Icelandic Parliament goes on summer vacation.

Helgi Hrafn Gunnarsson, another Icelandic politician in favor of the bill said:

We wanted to do this earlier but citizenship is an extremely delicate issue when it's granted by parliament instead of granted through ordinary legal processes.

Drew Konráðsdóttir, chairman of the Icelandic Parliament, refused to hold debate on the issue because Snowden wasn't currently in the country requesting asylum. This move was however countered by Helga Vala Helgadóttir, a lawyer who specializes in cases of asylum. She says that there have been cases where people have applied from asylum from abroad, and only granted Visas upon arrival. Vala also added that anybody can apply for asylum through any Icelandic embassy. Though without citizenship it's likely that Snowden would be extradited to the US.

Iceland Government Introduce Bill to Grant Edward Snowden Asylum

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