On-the-run whistleblower Edward Snowden has reportedly been granted a visa to stay in Russia for another three years, according to his lawyer.
The former NSA analyst, who dominated headlines in 2013 after leaking details of NSA phone and internet surveillance systems to the Guardian and Washington post, was granted a year's temporary asylum in Russia - which ran out at the start of the month.
His lawyer Anatoly Kucherena today told Russian news teams: "The decision on the application has been taken and therefore starting 1 August 2014, Edward Snowden has received a three-year residential permit."
This means Snowden can now travel freely from Russia - although he will remain vigilant of US extradition if he were to leave as he has been charged with espionage and theft of government property by the US.
Snowden, who fled to Russia’s Moscow Sheremetyevo airport over a year ago, spent nearly two months trapped in a terminal area after his travel papers were rescinded.
The flaring tension between heavily sanctioned Russia and the west, over the Ukrainian conflict, saw the country yesterday retaliating by placing an embargo upon EU and US food and agriculture imports.