Does Anyone In The World Actually Want Edward Snowden?

The former government contractor has applied for asylum in more than 20 countries. UPDATE: Nearly a week later, Snowden has been formally offered asylum in Venezuela.

1. India

Jacquelyn Martin / AP

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry with Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.

ID: 1326376

Is Snowden welcome? No.

India was the first country to reject Snowden, explaining that after “careful examination we have concluded that we see no reason to accede to the Snowden request.”

ID: 1326943

2. China

JEWEL SAMAD / Getty Images

President Obama and Chinese President Xi Jinping.

ID: 1326377

Is Snowden welcome? Unknown.

A government spokeswoman said she had “no information” about Snowden’s asylum application Tuesday morning.

ID: 1326925

3. Ecuador


Ecuadorean President Rafael Corrrea.

ID: 1326383

Is Snowden welcome? Doesn’t look like it.

Snowden’s application won’t be considered unless he is “on Ecuadorean territory,” President Correa said in an interview with the Guardian. He added that helping Snowden get from Hong Kong to Russia was a “mistake on our part,” made at “four in the morning” by an official who didn’t have authorization.

ID: 1326778

4. Poland

Alessandra Tarantino / AP

Biden and President Bronislaw Komorowski of Poland.

ID: 1326389

Is Snowden welcome? No.

“A document, that does not meet the formal conditions for an asylum request, has arrived,” Polish Foreign Minister Radoslaw Sikorski apparently tweeted. “But even if it did [meet conditions], I won’t give a positive recommendation.”

ID: 1326602

5. Ireland


Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton with Irish President Michael D. Higgins.

ID: 1326379

Is Snowden welcome? Not eligible.

From the Guardian:

A spokesman for the department of justice said that under Irish law an asylum application could only be accepted from a person who had landed in or was within the state.

ID: 1326878

6. Brazil


Vice President Joe Biden with Brazil’s President Dilma Rousseff.

ID: 1326378

Is Snowden welcome? That’s a hard “No.”

Brazil became the second country to outright reject Snowden’s application without even using the excuse of eligibility.

Brazil will not grant asylum to former U.S. spy agency contractor Edward Snowden, a Foreign Ministry spokesman said on Tuesday, adding that it will leave the request unanswered.

ID: 1326906

7. Russia

Mikhail Metzel / AP

Clinton and Russian President Vladimir Putin.

ID: 1326380

Is Snowden welcome? Yes, on one condition …

This might have been Snowden’s best chance at asylum, as he is already on Russian soil, but he pulled his application after Putin said he could only stay if he stops “harming our American partners.”

ID: 1326862

8. Austria


Obama and Austrian President Heinz Fischer.

ID: 1326381

Is Snowden welcome? It’s highly unlikely.

Again, he’s not eligible. “An application for asylum must be made in Austria. We state under the rule of law and must follow the same procedure in all cases,” Chancellor Werner Faymann said.

However! Snowden wouldn’t be deported if he came to Austria as “there is no international arrest warrant” for him, Interior Minister Johanna Mikl-Leitner said.

ID: 1326838

9. Bolivia


Clinton and Bolivia’s President Evo Morales.

ID: 1326384

Is Snowden welcome? Maybe!

“If there were a request, of course we would be willing to debate and consider the idea,” President Evo Morales told RT. But according to local media, an application hasn’t even been received.

ID: 1326716

10. Venezuela

HANDOUT / Reuters

Obama and former Venezuelan leader Hugo Chavez.

ID: 1326385

Is Snowden welcome? YES.

On Friday, President Nicolás Maduro offered asylum to Snowden, saying he made his decision “in the name of America’s dignity.”

Early on, it looked likely that Venezuela would come through for Snowden.

“We think this young person has done something very important for humanity, has done a favour to humanity, has spoken great truths to deconstruct a world … that is controlled by an imperialist American elite,” Maduro said Tuesday, adding that Snowden “deserves the world’s protection.”

ID: 1326696

11. Spain

Andres Kudacki / AP

Spain’s Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy and former President Bill Clinton.

ID: 1326386

Is Snowden welcome? No — he’s not eligible.

“For an asylum petition to become a petition that the government could study, in other words for it to be legally admissible, it has to be made by a person who is in Spain,” Foreign Minister Jose Manuel Garcia-Margallo told reporters.

ID: 1326669

12. Switzerland


Swiss President Ueli Maurer.

ID: 1326387

Is Snowden welcome? Not through asylum, but there may be another way.

According to the Wall Street Journal, Switzerland stopped accepting asylum applications at embassies in September. A Swiss official in Moscow told USA Today the only exception is when “the person’s life is in danger … that doesn’t appear to be the case here.

More from WSJ:

Instead, potential asylum seekers can request a three-month humanitarian visa that allows them to travel to the Alpine country. Humanitarian visas are granted when a person’s life is in immediate danger. Celine Kohlprath, a spokeswoman for Switzerland’s migration department, said Mr. Snowden had yet to apply for a humanitarian visa.

ID: 1326648

13. Nicaragua

STRINGER / Reuters

Nicaragua’s President Daniel Ortega.

ID: 1326388

Is Snowden welcome? No response yet.

ID: 1326623

14. Netherlands

MANDEL NGAN / Getty Images

Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte and Obama.

ID: 1326391

Is Snowden welcome? No.

Dutch State Secretary for Security and Justice Fred Teeven said the application isn’t valid, as Snowden is currently abroad: “Since 2003, it is no longer possible to [apply] from abroad,” he said.

ID: 1326594

15. Norway

SAUL LOEB / Getty Images

Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg of Norway with Clinton.

ID: 1326392

Is Snowden welcome? Definitely not.

The Directorate of Immigration has received an application for asylum from Edward Joseph Snowden, Citizen of USA. The Directorate rejects the application for asylum in Norway.

ID: 1326570

16. Cuba


Cuban President Fidel Castro.

ID: 1326393

Is Snowden welcome? Who knows, really? The government isn’t commenting.

ID: 1326563

17. Finland

AFP / Getty Images

Clinton and President of Finland Sauli Niinistö.

ID: 1326394

Is Snowden welcome? No.

The Wall Street Journal reports that Finland has received Snowden’s application, though it hasn’t been processed yet. According to local reports, the application isn’t even considered valid, as Snowden is required to be in the country to make an asylum request.

ID: 1326526

18. Italy

Pool / Getty Images

Obama meets with President Giorgio Napolitano of Italy.

ID: 1326395

Is Snowden welcome No.

Italy says Snowden is ineligible, but twists the knife in further: “[There] do not exist the legal conditions to accept such a request which in the government’s view would not be acceptable on a political level either,” Foreign Minister Emma Bonino said Thursday.

ID: 1326473

19. Germany

Pool / Getty Images

German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Kerry.

ID: 1326397

Is Snowden welcome? Nope.

Late Tuesday, Germany’s Foreign Ministry and Interior Ministry said “the conditions for admittance are not fulfilled.”

ID: 1326448

20. France


Obama and French President Francois Hollande.

ID: 1326396

Is Snowden welcome? No.

“Like many countries, France received a request for asylum from Mr. Edward Snowden through its embassy in Moscow. Given the legal analysis and the situation of the interested party, France will not agree,” French Interior Minister Manuel Valls said Thursday. Snowden’s rejection — announced the same day Le Monde broke the news of a massive French data surveillance program — comes after a handful of French political parties expressed strong support for his asylum request.

ID: 1326458

21. Iceland


Iceland’s president Olafur Grimsson

ID: 1326970

Is Snowden welcome? Unknown.

Iceland has reportedly held “informal discussions” with someone representing Snowden — likely someone on the WikiLeaks legal team — but there has so far been no formal response from the country. Iceland Finance Minister Bjarni Benediktsson said Snowden’s application will receive no special treatment.

Snowden initially identified Iceland as the place he’d most like to seek asylum.

ID: 1326999

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Jessica Testa is a national reporter for BuzzFeed News and is based in New York.
Contact Jessica Testa at

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