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Bolivia officially offers Snowden asylum

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Bolivia has officially joined a growing number of Latin American countries offering the human right to asylum from persecution to Edward Snowden.

Bolivian President Evo Morales on Saturday welcomed Snowden to his country.

Morales did not say he had received a formal petition from the 30-year-old human rights defender, who had applied to 20 countries for safe haven.

"We have decided to offer humanitarian asylum to the American Edward Snowden to protect him from the persecution being unleashed by the world's most powerful empire,'' Maduro said as a military parade began in Venezuela's capital celebrating the 202nd anniversary of the country's declaration of independence.

Maduro has repeatedly said that the world's highest profile targeted individual whistleblower is being unfairly attacked by the U.S. government.

Under Article 14 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, Snowden has a right to asylum from U.S. persecution.

That right has been violated by President Barack Obama, who canceled the young whistleblower's passport.

Snowden has broken no law and has not been charged with breaking the law.

The NSA, its collaborators including private contractors have engaged in what a growing number of nations are declaring as criminal activities involving spying on all of humanity.

Other South American countries' leaders have said they intend to offer asylum to Snowden, a hero in their eyes and that of rights defenders globally.