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No asylum request from Snowden: French interior minister


19:44, July 04, 2013

PARIS, July 4 (Xinhua) -- French Interior Minister Manuel Valls on Thursday said France did not receive a request for asylum from fugitive former U.S. National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden.

Speaking to French channel BFM TV, Valls said any asylum request should be "considered carefully," but added he personally was not in favor of granting Snowden any special status.

"We have obviously relations with the United States, including on possible extradition for a number of individuals. I think the matter poses a lot of problems," he said.

Snowden, 30, was charged by Washington with espionage and theft of government property following his disclosure of massive secret phone and Internet surveillance programs of the National Security Agency.

After blowing the whistle in Hong Kong, Snowden fled to Moscow and has stayed since June 23 in the transit area of Moscow's Sheremetyevo airport. He has filed applications for asylum in 21 countries.

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