Putin Says Snowden is "Not a Traitor" in 'Putin Interviews' Clip

Pierre Vaugeois
Juin 2, 2017

In newly released clips from the interview, Putin reveals that he sees Snowden's actions as legal but not moral.

Granted unprecedented access to both Putin's professional and personal worlds, Oscar-winning writer and director Oliver Stone (Platoon, Snowden), with the help of his longtime documentary producer Fernando Sulichin, interviewed the Russian leader more than a dozen times over the course of two years, most recently in February following the USA presidential elections. "He did not betray the interests of his country".

Stone is best known as the director of Wall Street, Natural Born Killers and Snowden, in which Joseph Gordon-Levitt plays Snowden.

The former NSA contractor now lives in exile in Russian Federation for leaking secrets that divulged the agency's global bulk surveillance operations.

On Thursday, the CBS-owned premium cable network released a preview of the new series, the result of more than 36 hours of interviews with the Russian leader by Academy Award-winner Stone (Platoon, Snowden) over the course of two years. -Russian relations during his almost two decades in power, criticism surrounding Russia's involvement in crises in Syria and Ukraine, and allegations by the US spy agencies that Russia interfered with the 2016 USA presidential election.

However, Putin explains, "If [Snowden] didn't like anything at his work he should have simply resigned. That's his right. But since you are asking me whether it's right or wrong, I think it's wrong".

"Snowden is not a traitor. Nor did he transfer any information to any other country which would have been pernicious to his own country or to his own people." said Putin. He goes on to explain that by comparison, Russia's intelligence is "working quite well".

Also in the interview, Putin said Russian intelligence suffers from problems he implied he saw with the NSA.

"Our intelligence services always conform to the law", he says. And secondly, trying to spy on your allies, if you really consider them allies, is just indecent. "And it means that in the end, it deals damage to your own national security".

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