- The Washington Times - Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Russian President Vladimir Putin said on Tuesday that intelligence leaker and former National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden tried to get Russia on board to work together, but he said no. He also said that Mr. Snowden stayed in the Russian Consulate in Hong Kong before he traveled to Moscow in June.

And further: Mr. Snowden is an odd man, the Russian president said.

Mr. Putin made the statements during an interview with Russian state television and The Associated Press.

He said, “I hope they won’t be angry with me, but the American secret services could have behaved more professionally and the diplomats as well, actually.”

Mr. Putin further said, as BuzzFeed reported, that Mr. Snowden never gave Russia any information, though he asked the Russian leader to “join him in his fight for human rights.”

And Mr. Putin’s assessment of Mr. Snowden?

“[He’s] a strange guy,” Mr. Putin said. “I don’t know what he thinks about himself. What’s he going to do with the rest of his life?”

Mr. Snowden is trying to find a job, his Russian attorney said in an AP report. But he has spent nearly all his savings and is having trouble accessing money that supporters have set aside for him, his attorney added.

• Cheryl K. Chumley can be reached at cchumley@washingtontimes.com.

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