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Iran Press TV

US involved in extensive hacking on China, Hong Kong: Snowden

Iran Press TV

Thu Jun 13, 2013 10:47AM GMT

NSA whistleblower who leaked major US electronic spying operations within and outside the country has further exposed US the spy agency's involvement in massive hacking against China and Hong Kong.

Pointing to the 'extensive hacking operations' by the US in a Thursday interview with the Hong Kong-based South China Morning Post newspaper, Edward Snowden reportedly told the daily he wanted to show "the hypocrisy of the US government when it claims that it does not target civilian infrastructure, unlike its adversaries."

Snowden's new assertions about American cyber attack operations against China seriously undermines Obama administration's recent publicity campaign on what it alleges to be massive hacking operations by the Chinese military to "steal" American corporate and government secrets.

Snowden, 29, a former contract employee for the National Security Agency (NSA), told the Hong Kong daily that the agency ran 61,000 hacking operations, with "hundreds of targets" in China and Hong Kong, according to a Los Angeles Times report on Thursday.

The hacking operations, Snowden added, had been in place since 2009 "and targeted the Chinese University of Hong Kong, public officials, businesses and students."

He further emphasized, "We hack network backbones -- like huge Internet routers, basically -- that give us access to the communications of hundreds of thousands of computers without having to hack every single one."

The interview was reportedly the first public comments made by Snowden since Monday, when he checked out of the Hong Kong hotel where he had been staying.

Snowden admitted on Sunday that he was the primary source of unauthorized disclosures of highly classified US telephone and Internet surveillance systems, describing the US spying capabilities 'horrifying.'

Snowden also told the Hong Kong daily that he intended to fight extradition and remain there as long as possible.

'I have had many opportunities to flee Hong Kong, but I would rather stay and fight the United States government in the courts, because I have faith in Hong Kong's rule of law,' he said. 'My intention is to ask the courts and people of Hong Kong to decide my fate. I have been given no reason to doubt your system.'

Snowden has also been offered possible political asylum in Russia and Iceland, according to recent press reports.


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