Edward Snowden has come forward as the source of leaked information about U.S. electronic surveillance programs. In an interview with the Guardian, he said he has been hiding out in Hong Kong because of the city’s “spirited commitment to free speech.” But Hong Kong has had an extradition treaty in place with the U.S. since 1998 and experts say it may not have been the best place for Snowden to seek asylum, especially at a time when China seems committed to establishing stronger relations with the U.S.
What does Hong Kong’s extradition treaty with the U.S. mean for Snowden? Was it a mistake for him to go to Hong Kong or is there a chance he will get the protection he expected? Where else could he go?
Martin S. Flaherty, teaches International Law at Fordham Law School. He is also a visiting professor at Princeton University.
Mark Gibney, teaches political science at the University of North Carolina Asheville