In other words, Russian officials won't go so far as to grant Snowden asylum (even if he had not withdrawn that request), but they also will not make the effort to extradite him back to the U.S. or intervene in any other way. At least not for the time being.
The bitterness still felt in Russian circles about Viktor Bout also plays a role in this decision-making.
The NSA whistle-blower, in the meantime, is still at Terminal E of Moscow's Sheremetyevo airport.
It is a terminal that ironically has a Burger King, a Friday's, a bar called "Pub," and a hotel called "Vozdyshnij Express" (Air-y Express).
It's an area that is pretty notorious for housing people who either want to or have no other choice than to stay there ... well, indefinitely.
But most importantly, especially for those running from the law, the hotel and the surrounding area is not technically considered "Russian soil."
In fact, an airport employee confirmed to Russian reporters that someone can basically live in this terminal for months because that hotel is there.
According to Viktor Gorbachev, director general of the Russian Civil Airports Association, there have been instances where people, particularly from Africa, fly to Sheremetyevo, get rid of their passports and then stay for years. Some even end up getting married at that very terminal!
According to sources, a few days after Snowden's arrival in Moscow, an exchange between police and a journalist went as follows:
A Russian police officer asked, "Are you looking for someone? You won't find him."
Answering the question of whether or not he'd seen Snowden, the police officer said "I see him all the time. But you won't find him."
—By CNBC's Dina Gusovsky. She is a former anchor/correspondent for Russia Today. She emigrated to the United States from Moscow in 1991. Follow her on Twitter at @DinaGusovsky.