NEW YORK, April 10 (UPI) -- The journalists who first published the documents obtained by Edward Snowden detailing the extensive NSA surveillance program are returning to the U.S.
Former Guardian journalists Glenn Greenwald and Laura Poitras -- both Americans -- have not returned to the U.S. since they first made public the Snowden files in June 2013. They are scheduled to attend an award ceremony in New York where they will be receiving the Polk award for their reporting.
Greenwald says his return is partially due to the increase in threats from "factions of the government."
"Certain factions in the U.S. government have deliberately intensified the threatening climate for journalists," said Greenwald. "It's just the principle that I shouldn't allow those tactics to stop me from returning to my own country."
The Obama administration has been sharply criticized for its crackdown on whistleblowers and the journalists who publish their stories. In 2013, the U.S. dropped from the 32nd to the 46th spot in press freedoms in the worldwide rankings by Reporters Without Borders.