US calls on Ecuador to reject Snowden asylum request

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US calls on Ecuador to reject Snowden asylum request

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US Vice-President Joe Biden has asked Ecuador to refuse asylum for fugitive ex-CIA analyst Edward Snowden.

Ecuadorian President Rafael Correa said he and Biden held a “cordial” telephone conversation, during which the request was made.

Washington confirmed the talks, but gave no details.

The US has charged Snowden with theft of government property and unauthorised communication of national defence information.

President Correa said Snowden was not an issue for Ecuador until he arrives in the country.

“We have not processed the request, because Snowden is not on Ecuadorean soil, and when he arrives, if he arrives and we have to process the request, we will seek the opinion of the United States as we did with the Assange case with the UK. We will listen to everyone, but the decision will be taken by us under our sovereignty.”

Edward Snowden has been on the run since he reveled details of top secret US surveillance operations.

He is thought to be holed up at a Moscow airport, since he arrived In Russia from Hong Kong nearly a week ago.