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Protesters call halt to Snowden extradition

Protesters call halt to Snowden extradition
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Hong Kong (AFP): Hundreds of protesters staged a rally in rain-hit Hong Kong on Saturday to urge the city's government not to extradite former spy...

CallHong Kong (AFP): Hundreds of protesters staged a rally in rain-hit Hong Kong on Saturday to urge the city's government not to extradite former spy Edward Snowden, and slam the US for its surveillance programmes. Snowden, 29, has gone to ground in the city after blowing the lid on the US's vast electronic surveillance operation and has vowed to fight any extradition request. The city's first major demonstration on the issue saw protesters, including pro-democracy lawmakers, activists and a large number of expatriates march to the US consulate holding banners and shouting "Defend Free Speech", "Protect Snowden", "No Extradition" and "Respect Hong Kong Law". Many blew whistles and wore masks with Snowden's face on it. "Today we all blow the whistle," shouted Tom Grundy, a British blogger and activist who lives in Hong Kong. One protester held a sign of US President Barack Obama's famous 'Hope' poster, edited to show the leader as a spy wearing large headphones. Another sign read: "Betray Snowden, Betray freedom". Snowden told the South China Morning Post newspaper earlier this week that there have been more than 61,000 NSA hacking operations globally, targeting powerful "network backbones" that can yield access to hundreds of thousands of individual computers. "Snowden is now in Hong Kong and falls under our jurisdiction and we have to defend the fact that the city's courts are in the position to deal with the situation," rally spokeswoman Oiwan Lam told AFP.
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