After the White House tweaked the homophobic Russian leaders by sending openly gay delegates to the Sochi Olympics, Vladimir Putin decided to turn the tables by jabbing Barack Obama with the National Security Agency (NSA) scandal.
Speaking at a packed annual media conference in Moscow the Russian president – who is also the most powerful man on Earth – said he was jealous of his American counterpart because he enjoyed the privilege of snooping on international leaders – including U.S. allies – and get away with it.
While he praised former NSA contractor and whistleblower Edward Snowden for his “noble purpose,” he also emphasized on the importance of global espionage which is – to quote Putin – one of the oldest professions in the world. He added the U.S. spy agencies, however, needed to limit their activities.
“I envy Obama because he can spy on his allies without any consequences,” said Putin when he was questioned regarding his relations with the U.S. after the whole NSA controversy blew up.
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Putin also stated that contrary to popular belief, he had not personally met with Snowden to whom Russia granted political asylum in August. He said his government was not extracting any “secrets” from the whistleblower.
"I have never met him. He has his own views about life, about what he should do and how. I won't hide it that he seems very interesting to me," said Putin.
On December 17, he requested for Brazil to grant him protection since his temporary asylum in Russia is due to expire in August. As of the time of writing, his appeal remains unanswered.
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