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Associated Press, Published June 09 2013

Report: NSA contract worker is newspaper's source on US government surveillance program

WASHINGTON — Risking prosecution by the U.S. government, a 29-year-old intelligence analyst who claims to have worked at the National Security Agency and the CIA was revealed as the source of The Guardian's and The Washington Post's disclosures about the U.S. government's secret surveillance programs, the newspapers reported Sunday.

The leaks have reopened the post-Sept. 11 debate about privacy concerns versus heightened measure to protect against terrorist attacks, and led the NSA to ask the Justice Department to conduct a criminal investigation.

The Guardian said it was publishing the identity of Edward Snowden, a former technical assistant for the CIA and current employee of defense contractor Booz Allen Hamilton, at his own request. The Washington Post also identified Snowden as its principal source for its reporting on intelligence operations that put the White House and the administration on the defensive.

“My sole motive is to inform the public as to that which is done in their name and that which is done against them,” Snowden told The Guardian.

He told The Washington Post that he would “ask for asylum from any countries that believe in free speech and oppose the victimization of global privacy” in an interview from Hong Kong, where he is staying.