Edward Snowden, who is wanted in the United States for espionage for national security leaks, has left Moscow's airport and entered Russia, his lawyer told the Associated Press.
Russian lawyer Anatoly Kucherena said Thursday that Snowden was issued papers that allowed him to leave Sheremetyevo airport, where he resided since June 23.
The Obama administration had declined to comment Thursday morning.
The United States has been trying to convince Russian authorities to send Snowden to the United States to face criminals charges for months. The issue has complicated U.S.-Russian relations and the White House has hinted President Barack Obama may cancel a previously scheduled trip to Moscow in September.
Attorney General Eric Holder told Russia last week that Snowden will not face the death penalty or torture if he is returned to the United States to face espionage charges.
In a letter made public Friday, Holder told Russian Justice Minister Alexander Konovalov that the former contractor's professed fears of facing abuse and possible execution are "entirely without merit."
"The charges he faces do not carry that possibility, and the United States would not seek the death penalty even if Mr. Snowden were charged with additional, death penalty-eligible crimes," Holder wrote. "Second, Mr. Snowden will not be tortured. Torture is unlawful in the United States."