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Surveillance Whistleblower Snowden Critiques Kremlin Anti-Terror Policy

Charles Platiau / AP

American anti-surveillance activist Edward Snowden has condemned the Russian government's crackdown on civil rights.

Speaking in an interview with the Financial Times published on Monday, Snowden said that Russia had gone “too far” in its fight against terrorism, “in ways that are completely unnecessary, costly and corrosive to individual and collective rights.”

“It’s important to understand that this is not unique to any one country,” he said. “But again we see this happening in countries that have long had sort of the leash to carry out these policies but they did them in the dark before, now they’ve doing them in public. Of course, I’m thinking of countries like China, like Russia.”

Snowden was granted asylum in Moscow in 2013 after he leaked details of U.S. mass surveillance programs. While he has been critical of a number of Russian laws, he said that he couldn't fix the human rights situation in the country and that he needed to “fix my own country first,” the Financial Times reported.

Snowden said that he can now speak some basic Russian, but still plans to one day leave the country.

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