US refuses to pardon Snowden
Updated: 2015-07-29 10:21
Former US National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden appears live via video during a meeting about whistle blowers at the Council of Europe in Strasbourg, France, June 23, 2015. [Photo/Agencies]
WASHINGTON - The White House on Tuesday reiterated its refusal standing to pardon the government information leaker Edward Snowden. Instead, it says, the former contractor should return to the US and "accept the consequences of his actions."
"He should come home to the United States, and be judged by a jury of his peers - not hide behind the cover of an authoritarian regime," White House counterterrorism advisor Lisa Monaco said on Tuesday in response to a petition about Snowden on Tuesday.
"Right now, he's running away from the consequences of his actions," Monaco noted.
The petition to the White House was created in the summer of 2013, shortly after Snowden released his documents, and has more than 167,000 signatures.
Her comments are similar to those that all level of government officials have given in recent months about Snowden, who is currently living in Russia.
While the Obama administration was at one point discussing the possibility of leniency for Snowden, those talks appear to have dissolved.
"If he felt his actions were consistent with civil disobedience, then he should do what those who have taken issue with their own government do: Challenge it, speak out, engage in a constructive act of protest, and accept the consequences of his actions," Monaco added.