Russia is considering returning whistleblower Edward Snowden back to the United States, according to US intelligence information collected by CNBC .
The report, which quotes two sources in the intelligence community, states that by sending Snowden back to the United States, Russia hopes to “curry favor” with President Donald Trump. One source noted that talks of sending Snowden back to America began around Inauguration Day.
Trump has repeatedly referred to Snowden as a “traitor” and has promised to execute the former NSA official.
Snowden made headlines in 2013 when he leaked a number of national secrets about domestic surveillance programs. He fled the country and was eventually granted asylum in Russia.
Despite rumors that President Barack Obama would pardon Snowden before his term ended, Snowden is still wanted by the US government.
Alex Hider is a writer for the E.W. Scripps National Desk. Follow him on Twitter @alexhider.