US National Security Agency leaker Edward Snowden left the transit zone of a Moscow airport and entered Russia after authorities granted him temporary asylum, his lawyer said on Thursday.
Anatoly Kucherena said that Snowden’s whereabouts will be kept secret for security reasons.
The former NSA systems analyst had been stuck at Moscow’s Sheremetyevo airport since his arrival from Hong Kong on June 23.
“He now is one of the most sought after men in the world,” Kucherena told reporters in Sheremetyevo.
President Vladimir Putin had said that Snowden could receive asylum in Russia on condition he stops leaking US secrets. Kucherena has said Snowden accepted the condition.
Snowden, who revealed details of a US intelligence programme to monitor Internet activity, has received offers of asylum from Venezuela, Nicaragua and Bolivia and said he would like to visit those countries.
However, the logistics of reaching any of those countries are complicated because his US passport has been revoked.
(Copyright 2013 APTN. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)