Zimbabwe could be Edward Snowd

Zimbabwe could be Edward Snowden’s last refuge

Zimbabwe and Cuba are reportedly the most realistic asylum prospects for US document leaker Edward Snowden.

Zimbabwe could be Edward Snowd

snowden faceEdward Snowden, the famed National Security Agency (NSA) document leaker, has allegedly approached the Zimbabwean government asking for asylum.

The news comes after Snowden’s asylum applications to Russia and China various European countries were all rendered unsuccessful. Zimbabwe and Cuba are reportedly two of only six countries still considering Snowden’s application for asylum.

Uneasy relations

Although Zimbabwean officials have not officially commented on the situation, there is a lot of speculation as to whether the uneasy relationship between the two countries might prompt Zimbabwe to accept the US fugitive.

The United States has played a leading role in condemning Zimbabwe for its failure to observe democratic processes and dismal human rights record. Like a number of European countries, the US imposed severe sanctions on Zimbabwe in 2002.


Snowden is allegedly stranded in Moscow Airport; he has been there since 23 June when he flew in from Hong Kong. He withdrew his application to seek asylum in Russia after Putin warned him to stop harming Russia’s ‘American friends’.

The WND News network reported that Zimbabwe and Cuba are Snowden’s most realistic prospects and that he has been focusing his attention on getting into Zimbabwe, Cuba or Venezuela.

He had previously hoped to get into Ecuador (the country sheltering Wikileaks founder Julian Assange in its London embassy). However, the Ecuadorian government has said it is not willing to consider Snowden’s application unless he finds his way onto Ecuadorian soil by entering an embassy or Ecuador itself.

Ecuadorian President, Nicolas Maduro, has recently been in Moscow on official business and reportedly passed through the same airport where Snowden is hiding.

Despite voicing support for Snowden by saying that he ‘deserves protection’ Maduro did not fly back to Ecuador with him, as Snowden had reportedly hoped.

Limited options 

Snowden’s choices are very limited and his supporters fear that if he returns to the US he will not receive a free trial. Cuba, a country that has a long history of accepting fugitives from the US, has not yet replied to the application.

In the words of Snowden himself ‘there are few world leaders who would risk standing for the human rights of an individual against the most powerful government on earth.’