10/31/2013 01:39 pm ET

Russian Facebook Firm Mum On Whether Newly Employed Edward Snowden Took Its Job Offer


WASHINGTON -- Edward Snowden's Russian lawyer, Anatoly Kucherena, said Thursday that the National Security Agency leaker had a new job in Russia at a "large Russian site," but he wouldn't say where "for security reasons."

A Facebook-like social networking site that had offered Snowden a job in August declined to comment to The Huffington Post when asked if he had accepted its offer.

"We're not commenting," VKontakte spokesman Georgiy Lobushkin emailed.

By contrast, several other top Russian Internet companies denied that Snowden had begun working for them. Yandex, a Russian equivalent of Google; Mail.ru, a Russian email provider; and Rambler.ru, another search engine, all told Digit.ru that he was not their latest employee.

Snowden's employment is yet another sign that the NSA leaker remains in Russia, having first gone there in June in hopes of transiting to a third country for asylum. The Kremlin-connected tabloid Lifenews.ru has posted photos of him grocery shopping and apparently on a boat on the Moscow River. His lawyer, who has strong Kremlin ties, has said little about Snowden's life other than that he is learning Russian and growing to appreciate Russian culture.

VKontakte's founder, Pavel Durov, invited Snowden to work for the company in an Aug. 1 blog post.

"We invite Edward to St. Petersburg and we will be happy if he decides to fill our star team of programmers at VKontakte," Durov wrote. "Ultimately, there is no more popular European Internet company than VK. I think that to Edward it might be interesting to work on the defense of the protection of personal data for millions of our users."



Edward Snowden