“If Snowden should ask for political asylum, China should consider it,” said Guo Songmin, an editor with the business monthly ChinaSOE, after launching the online campaign.
“We can show our position towards human rights and freedom of speech,” the former People’s Liberation Army soldier said. “It is sad that China hasn’t done so already.”
Guo, who is a occasional commentator on current affairs on Chinese national television, has posted an appeal for China to grant the US citizen political asylum on Sina Weibo on Tuesday, where so far it has gained little feedback.
“We had this image of the US being the ‘bastion of freedom’ where you could go to the White House and insult the president,” said Guo. “Now we see, it’s not true. It’s like [George] Orwell says in 1984, ‘Big brother is watching you’.”
“Both leading political parties in the US have indicated that they want him persecuted for treason,” he said. “According to Article 32 of our constitution, we have the right and the duty to grant him asylum” if he applied.
Snowden’s whereabouts are currently unknown, but he is believed to be in Hong Kong, where he fled to from Hawaii.