Russia extends residence permit for Snowden

FILE- In this Feb. 17, 2016, file photo, former National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden, center, speaks via video conference to people in the Johns Hopkins University auditorium in Baltimore. (AP Photo/Juliet Linderman, File)

MOSCOW (AP) — Russian authorities have extended a residence permit for U.S. intelligence contractor Edward Snowden, who leaked thousands of secret documents from the National Security Agency.

Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said in a post on Facebook late on Tuesday that Snowden’s residence permit has been extended for “a couple of years.”

Snowden has been living in Russia since 2013 when he got stuck in the transit area at a Moscow airport after the United States canceled his passport.

The announcement comes as U.S. President Barack Obama has commuted the prison sentence of Chelsea Manning, who was convicted for leaking more than 700,000 U.S. documents.

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