NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden has hit out at a critical report by the House of Representatives intelligence committee.
The report rejected Edward Snowden’s view of himself as a whistleblower, and said he was a disgruntled employee whose actions did nothing more than help US enemies.
It comes a day after two rights groups launched a campaign for President Barack Obama to pardon Edward Snowden.
The White House has rejected the possibility of a presidential pardon.
The release of the report, two years in the making, also coincides with that of the movie Snowden, directed by Oliver Stone.
In a series of tweets, Edward Snowden dismissed the report’s findings, writing: “Their report is so artlessly distorted that it would be amusing if it weren’t such a serious act of bad faith.”
Edward Snowden, the former National Security Agency (NSA) contractor, has been living in Russia since 2013, when he gained notoriety for releasing thousands of classified documents that revealed mass phone and internet surveillance put in place after the 9/11 attacks.
Releasing a summary of its 36-page investigation into the case, the House committee said Edward Snowden had fallen out with his colleagues and lied about his background while at the NSA.
The report says that most of the material Edward Snowden leaked related to military secrets that had nothing to do with Americans’ privacy but were to “protect American troops overseas and… provide vital defenses against terrorists and nation-states”.
Amnesty International and the American Civil Liberties Union launched their “Pardon Snowden” campaign on September 14, urging President Barack Obama to do so before he leaves office in January 2017.
According to Amnesty, no-one should be prosecuted for exposing human rights violations, which, it claimed, is what “indiscriminate mass surveillance of communications” amounts to.
The ACLU acts as Edward Snowden’s legal adviser, and called him “a great American who deserves clemency for his patriotic acts”.