Snowden denies receiving assistance from Russian intelligence with NSA leaks

13.si

Former National Security Agen­­cy contractor Edward Snowden denied accusations that he was working for a foreign government when he stole countless classified documents detailing U.S. surveillance programs and efforts to gather information on world leaders.

In an interview with the New Yorker, published Tuesday evening on the magazine’s Web site, Snowden said claims that he may have been working for the Russians as a spy were “absurd.”

On NBC’s “Meet the Press” on Sunday, Rep. Mike Rogers (R-Mich.), chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, called Snowden a “thief.” Rogers said he believed somebody must have helped Snowden steal the documents.

Rogers rejected the notion that it was a coincidence that Snowden eventually found refuge in Russia. But the lawmaker offered no proof that Snowden was working in concert with Russian intelligence.

Snowden told the magazine that he “clearly and unambiguously acted alone, with no assistance from anyone, much less a government.” He said the allegations wouldn’t “stick,” adding that they were false and that “the American people are smarter than politicians think they are.”

The CIA’s Counterintelligence Center has been conducting an exhaustive investigation to determine whether Snowden had help or whether someone assisted him unwittingly. So far, the CIA and the FBI have not turned up evidence that another country recruited Snowden to take the documents.

Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee, also did not rule out that Snowden received assistance. “He may well have,” she said on “Meet the Press.”

Speaking from Moscow, Snowden said, “It’s not..

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