Obama: 'I'm Not Gonna Be Scrambling Jets To Get a 29-Year-Old Hacker' [Video]


Obama said he hadn't personally called either Russian President Vladimir Putin or Chinese President Xi Jinping to request their cooperation on Edward Snowden.

(AP) The United States won't be scrambling military jets or engaging in high-level diplomatic bartering to get National Security Agency leaker Edward Snowden extradited to the U.S., President Barack Obama said Thursday.

Dismissing him as "a 29-year-old hacker," Obama sought to downplay the international chase for Snowden, lowering the temperature of an issue that has already raised tensions between the U.S. and uneasy partners Russia and China.

Obama said the damage to U.S. national security has already been done and his top focus now is making sure it can't happen again.

"I'm not going to have one case with a suspect who we're trying to extradite suddenly be elevated to the point where I've got to start doing wheeling and dealing and trading on a whole host of other issues, simply to get a guy extradited so he can face the justice system," Obama said at a joint news conference with Senegal's President Macky Sall.