News — 26 July 2013

Latest developments on Edwards Snowden’s asylum appeal in Russia and Jimmy Carter criticising America.

Jimmy Carter is the only one of the former US presidents still alive who had the guts to speak out about US intelligence methods, calling them undemocratic and describing Edward Snowden’s leaks as “beneficial” for the country even though he did violate US law.

According to German magazine Der Spiegel, he stated, “America has no functioning democracy at this moment.” Russian news channel RT.com further outlined that “He [Carter] also believes the spying-scandal is undermining democracy around the world, as people become increasingly suspicious of US internet platforms, such as Google and Facebook. While such mediums have normally been associated with freedom of speech and have recently become a major driving force behind emerging democratic movements, fallout from the NSA spying scandal has dented their credibility.”

© Mario Tama/Getty Images/AFP

© Mario Tama/Getty Images/AFP

It’s not the first time Carter has criticized US intelligence policies. In a previous interview with CNN, he said the NSA leaks signified that “the invasion of human rights and American privacy has gone too far.”

Meanwhile latest news is that Snowden plans to settle in Russia and is ready to begin a court battle if the country’s migration service denies his asylum plea, according to Anatoly Kucherena, a Russian lawyer assisting him:

“He’s planning to arrange his life here. He plans to get a job. And, I think, that all his further decisions will be made considering the situation he found himself in,” he added. Kucherena expressed hope that Snowden’s plea will be granted, because the reasons which prompted Snowden ask for political asylum in Russia “deserve attention.”

“He fears for his health and his life. He’s afraid that if he’ll be handed to the US, torture can be used against him down to death penalty,” he said.

It has also been reported that The National Security Agency has invited certain members of Congress to a top secret, invitation only meeting to discuss a proposed amendment that could end the NSA’s ability to conduct dragnet surveillance on millions of Americans.

Read more on rt.com and see live broadcast.

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