Moscow: Former National Security Agency leaker Edward Snowden has asked for political asylum in Russia, reported the Interfax news agency.
Interfax cited Kim Shevchenko, the duty officer at the Russian Foreign Ministry's consular office in Moscow's Sheremetyevo airport, as saying that Snowden's representative, Sarah Harrison, handed over his request yesterday.
Snowden has been caught in legal limbo in the transit zone of Moscow's Sheremetyevo airport since his arrival from Hong Kong on June 23. The US has annulled his passport, and Ecuador, where he has hoped to get asylum, has been coy about offering him shelter.
Russia's President Vladimir Putin says Snowden will have to stop leaking US secrets if he wants to get asylum in Russia, but adds that Snowden has no plan to quit doing so.