Former US National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden, who leaked classified documents detailing government surveillance programmes, is calling on French President Emmanuel Macron to grant him asylum.

Mr Snowden, now living in Russia to avoid prosecution in the United States, stressed in an interview broadcast today on France’s Inter radio that “protecting whistleblowers is not a hostile act”, and that he feels entitled to get protected status in France.

Mr Snowden unsuccessfully applied for asylum in France in 2013 under Mr Macron’s predecessor, Francois Hollande.

He has also sought asylum in several other countries.

Mr Snowden’s memoir, telling his life story in detail for the first time, will be released Tuesday in about 20 countries, including France.

The French presidency did not comment.

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