A letter sent from US Attorney General Eric Holder to the Russian government has declared that the United States will not seek the death penalty against Edward Snowden if he is extradited.
The note, dated July 23, adds that the criminal charges Snowden faces in the U.S. do not carry the death penalty, and that this assurance carries onto additional charges that he may face upon his return. Additionally, the message also promises Snowden a full civilian trial.
This letter is in response to Snowden’s recent official requests for asylum, which he sent to a handful of countries last week, including Russia.
A spokesperson for Russian President Vladimir Putin says that Russia will not budge on its refusal to extradite Snowden. There is currently no extradition treaty between Russia and the United States.
“Russia has never extradited anyone and never will,” said Dmitry Peskov, Putin’s press attache.
Snowden is resposible for leaking sensitive NSA documents that outlined their massive dragnet electronic surveillance program, PRISM.