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White House warns Russia, slams China over Snowden travel

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The White House on Monday pressed Russia to use all options to expel former U.S. spy agency contractor Edward Snowden and slammed China for allowing the leaker of secret U.S. government surveillance secrets to leave Hong Kong.

White House spokesman Jay Carney said it was the U.S. assumption that Snowden was still in Russia and he dismissed suggestions that the decision to allow Snowden to depart Hong Kong was made by a low-level official.

"We are just not buying that this was a technical decision by a Hong Kong immigration official," Carney said.

"This was a deliberate choice by the government to release a fugitive despite a valid arrest warrant, and that decision unquestionably has a negative impact on the U.S.-China relationship," he said.

(Reporting by Jeff Mason and Roberta Rampton; Editing by Bill Trott)

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