It’s too delicious to not post. From the SCMP in part:
Hong Kong’s justice secretary said on Tuesday the United States had failed to provide crucial information necessary to support its request for the arrest of whistle-blower Edward Snowden before he had left the city.
The missing information included things as basic as a confirmation of Snowden’s full name and passport number, Secretary for Justice Rimsky Yuen Kwok-keung said on Tuesday.
“Up to the moment Snowden left the city, the US government had not replied to the Department of Justice’s request for the necessary information,” he said.
“Therefore, it was impossible and there was no legal basis under Hong Kong law for the Department of Justice to ask a Hong Kong judge to sign off on a provisional arrest warrant,” Yuen said. “[Thus] there then was no legal basis to restrict or ban Mr Snowden from leaving Hong Kong.”
Yuen’s public remarks – his first on the Snowden case – came after the White House said it was disappointed with the city’s failure to arrest the fugitive whistle-blower who has made public information detailing US internet spying programmes around the world. [snip]
The name used in US government diplomatic documents was Edward James Snowden, the US Department of Justice referred to him as Edward J Snowden, and Hong Kong’s Immigration Department had him recorded as Edward Joseph Snowden, Yuen said.
“I couldn’t say the three names were consistent, so we needed further clarification. Otherwise, there would have been legal problems with a provisional arrest warrant,” Yuen said.
The US also failed to explain to Hong Kong authorities how two of the three charges the US mentioned in its arrest request fell within the scope of a US-Hong Kong rendition of fugitive offenders agreement signed in 1996.
(Accused by the US of ‘stalling’, Hong Kong counters with this history):
Yuen said that on June 21 – two days before Snowden left — the Security Bureau wrote to the US government asking it to clarify reports that the US had been hacking into computers in Hong Kong.
On the same afternoon, Hong Kong’s Department of Justice e-mailed and sent by speed-post to the US its request for further information to support the US request for the provisional arrest of Snowden.
As of Tuesday, Hong Kong had not received a reply from the US to this request.
This piece at naked capitalism came from the SCMP through ExPat through correntewire to….NC. Yves adds this toward the end:
Yves here. There’s another layer I believe may have been operating in this contretemps. Various reports of how upset American officials were about Snowden exiting take the tone, “We were working with the HK officials, they didn’t tell us anything was wrong.” Even if that was true, look at the underlying assumption: the US and the HK government agreed Snowden was extradition material, it was just a matter of formalities to get him back to the US. It’s almost as if they assumed there was an agreement in principle and any details could beworked out or fudged as appropriate. This is basically a dealmaking view of the world: the important people will sort matters out. By contrast, the HK bureaucratic rigidity looks to be much closer to how Americans think laws work: rules are rules, and they are applied strictly and impartially (mind you, that is not to say the bureaucratic approach didn’t also serve HK’s political needs).
Read more at http://www.nakedcapitalism.com/2013/06/a4-paper-please-and-do-remember-to-spellcheck.html#ucqDB37eTO5vRl6l.99
Kgb and THD were of the opinion that i’d been too cynical about the use of the letter that they’d drafted to Alexander about the inaccuracies (read: lies) their fact sheet on section section 702 of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, the part of the law that underpins the agency’s PRISM data collection program. kgb was of the opinion that their questions would have to be answered, leading to…more.
What HuffPo is reporting is that the NSA simply deleted the page; guess that’s their answer for now.
Adding a few links from a piece or two downstream for easier access (back in time):