TIME National Security

Snowden: NSA’s Email Release Is Incomplete

NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden, an analyst with a U.S. defence contractor, is interviewed by The Guardian in his hotel room in Hong Kong
NSA whistle-blower Edward Snowden in a still image taken from video during an interview by the Guardian in his hotel room in Hong Kong on June 6, 2013 Glenn Greenwald and Laura Poitras—The Guardian/Reuters

The former intelligence contractor says he wrote many more emails that officials have chosen not to reveal, and that the single release after so many denials “shows the NSA feels it has something to hide”

The email released by the National Security Agency (NSA) that Edward Snowden sent to its Office of the General Counsel is only one of many, the whistle-blower said in an interview with the Washington Post.

“Today’s strangely tailored and incomplete leak only shows the NSA feels it has something to hide,” Snowden said.

On Thursday, the NSA released the email dated April 5, 2013, in which Snowden — who then worked as an intelligence contractor — asks whether regulations from different institutions take precedence over each other, and whether Executive Orders can outweigh federal statute.

The email’s release is the first acknowledgement that Snowden did contact officials before leaking information about widespread surveillance by the agency, though the NSA maintains that he did not raise concerns about mass data collection before going rogue.

“I’m glad they’ve shown they have access to records they claimed just a few months ago did not exist, and I hope we’ll see the rest of them very soon,” Snowden said.

As the release comes “after more than a year of denying any such contact existed,” he added, it “raises serious concerns” about the NSA.

“It reveals as false the NSA’s claim to Barton Gellman of the Washington Post in December of last year, that ‘after extensive investigation, including interviews with his former NSA supervisors and co-workers, we have not found any evidence to support Mr. Snowden’s contention that he brought these matters to anyone’s attention,’” the 30-year-old told the Post.

Snowden says he sent many more emails to other officials raising concerns about illegal surveillance.

[The Washington Post]

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