Refugee family that helped Edward Snowden settles into new home in Montreal

A refugee advocacy group says a family that helped shelter whistleblower Edward Snowden in Hong Kong in 2013 have landed in Canada after a long legal battle to find them a safe new home.

Marc-André Séguin with For the Refugees says Supun Thilina Kellapatha, Nadeeka Dilrukshi Nonis and their children Sethumdi and Dinath flew into Toronto Tuesday and are settling Wednesday into their new apartment in Montreal.

The family members are among the seven people who offered help and shelter to Snowden when he fled to Hong Kong after leaking classified documents from the U.S. National Security Agency.

READ MORE: Edward Snowden’s ‘guardian angel’ lands in Montreal, calls on Canada to help other refugees

Séguin says the helpers, who have been dubbed Snowden’s “guardian angels,” were all asylum seekers from Sri Lanka and the Philippines, and he says they have faced discrimination and barriers in their quest for refugee status due in part to the case’s notoriety.

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Two of the other “Snowden refugees” landed in Montreal in 2019, and the last remaining member of the group remains in Hong Kong awaiting approval to come to Canada.

Séguin says the new arrivals are looking forward to an “extraordinarily normal life” that includes being able to work and go to school, and the children getting their first photo IDs.

Click to play video: 'Family who protected Edward Snowden welcomed into Montreal' Family who protected Edward Snowden welcomed into Montreal

Family who protected Edward Snowden welcomed into Montreal – Apr 1, 2019

© 2021 The Canadian Press

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