Edward Snowden can now stay in Russian asylum until 2020, CNN reports.
Russia extended his asylum "a couple of years" on Tuesday. His asylum was set to expire this year but was confirmed to be extended until 2020. He originally sought asylum in 2013 after leaking documents that showed NSA activity worldwide. He received a three-year extension in 2014.
The extension was first announced by Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova, who criticized former CIA director Michael Morell's opinion piece arguing Snowden would be a "perfect inauguration gift" for the president-elect.
WATCH | This comes a day after President Obama commuted the sentence of Chelsea Manning, who was imprisoned for leaking military documents. But White House press secretary Josh Earnest made clear the two cases were considered very different.
Snowden was pleased to hear Manning's sentence was commuted.
More than one million Snowden supporters pled for similar mercy for Snowden.
The Human Rights Watch agreed Snowden was due similar treatment.