Snowdon, Morales, Mercusor, and Extradition Treaties

There seems to be some confusion as to whether Edward Snowdon can be extradited from Russia. Everyone is behaving as if Snowdon must remain ‘technically outside Russian soil’ in order not to be extradited. However this list of extradition treaties with the United States does not include Russia.

Meanwhile, Evo Morales, President of Bolivia, had his airplane forced down and held for fourteen hours. This has been regarded as air piracy by a British news item. The plane was searched, looking for Snowdon, as Morales tried to fly from Moscow to Bolivia.

The reaction in South America has been vocal. Brazil, Argentina, Uruguay, and Venezuela are recalling their representatives from France, Italy, Spain, and Portugal. You can read more on this here. Interestingly, the latter three do have extradition treaties with the United States. I suspect they may not comply rapidly with requests in the future.

If you’re waiting for the dumb questions, here are few. Given that neither China nor Hong Kong has extratidion arrangements with the USA, why was Snowdon in such a hurry to get out of there? Did he feel at risk? (yep, anyone who logs on to their computer from under a hood suspects hidden cameras, eh?) Would the USA have someone simply disappear in a foreign country? And finally, why is Russia keeping Snowdon in a sort-of no-man’s-land? Is it to appease the United States, while not turning Snowdon over to them?

More on this later.

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