A petition posted on the White House website, calling for an immediate pardon of US whistleblower Edward Snowden, has gathered nearly 40,000 signatures.
The former technical worker at the CIA and America's National Security Agency was revealed by the Guardian as being behind leaks of secret US government surveillance programmes.
"It's like a thief shouting stop thief," that's how a leading Chinese expert described the fallout from the NSA spying revelations.
The revelation of the Prism intelligence-gathering program will undermine the US' moral authority to deal with China over cyber espionage.
America's top intelligence official has called Edward Snowden's actions a "violation of sacred trust."