Edward Snowden wants to return to the United States, according to an exclusive interview with NBC’s Brian Williams.
“I don’t think there’s ever been any question that I’d like to go home,” Snowden said. “I mean, I’ve from day one said that I’m doing this to serve my country.”
After stealing hundreds of thousands of top secret documents from NSA servers, the 30-year-old former systems administrator became stranded in Moscow after arriving with no valid travel documents on June 23.
Russia granted asylum on August 1, and Snowden has been in living an undisclosed location ever since. He doesn’t know how he’d make it back to America.
“Now, whether amnesty or clemency ever becomes a possibility is not for me to say,” Snowden told NBC. “That’s a debate for the public and the government to decide. But if I could go anywhere in the world, that place would be home.”
The New York Times recently reported that U.S. Justice Department prosecutors “have signaled no interest in giving Mr. Snowden credit for the surveillance debate he started.”
In the interview, Snowden asserted that “had the government not gone too far and overreached — we wouldn’t be in a situation where whistleblowers were necessary,” adding
that he “will do everything I can to continue to work in the most responsible way possible — and to prioritise causing no harm while serving the public good.”
When Williams asked Snowden if he would apply for an extension to his one-year temporary asylum, the former CIA technician laughed and said “of course” he would apply if it ran out.
In January, Russia signaled that it had already decided to extend his stay.
The full interview airs tonight at 22:00 EDT. Here’s the clip:
NOW WATCH: Briefing videos
Business Insider Emails & Alerts
Site highlights each day to your inbox.