To quit Facebook, one Venezuelan minister has said, would be an act of defying the Central Intelligence Agency. As such, she has urged her fellow citizens to close their accounts on the popular social media website.
Referring to revelations last month of confidential data mining and communication spying programs lead by US intelligence, the Venezuelan minister believes her nation's citizens have been helping the CIA without knowing it, reports Yahoo! News.
Edward Snowden, who has become the object of much interest to US officials seeking to try him for treason, is still trapped in the Moscow airport. The former National Security Agency contractor is seeking asylum in a country that will protect him from extradition to the US.
Most countries have denied Snowden's requests. Venezuela, however, is currently one name being thrown around as they and several other South American nations have extended offers for asylum. Snowden has yet to accept or decline the invitations.
Snowden's leaks detailed how several major companies were aiding the NSA. This included PRISM and Facebook's and other popular services' involvement in the program, prompting some to quit Facebook.
Venezuela's Prisons Minister, Iris Varela, has since connected the dots as well. According to France24, Varela is known as a left-wing hardliner and self-described as an "anti-imperialist." Previously she had remarked that citizens should band together to seek financial compensation from the US, for what she calls the "gringo espionage."
On Twitter, Varela said they should seek restitution in full, eventually to "bankrupt the US economy."
Wednesday, Minister Varela, via Twitter, called on Venezuelans to "cancel your Facebook accounts, since unknowingly you have been working for free as CIA informants!"
Prisons Minister Iris Varela is well known for her contentious stances and radical rhetoric. She is also known as a major supporter of the late Hugo Chavez.
Venezuelans will have to do more than quit Facebook, if they want to avoid known NSA spy program participants, which include Skype, Apple, Google, and Microsoft.