Edward Snowden, has been nominated for the 2013 Nobel Peace Prize.
Stefan Svallfors, professor of sociology at Umea University in Sweden, in an open letter to the Norwegian parliament, nominated the American whistleblower who revealed the existence and extent of the surveillance by the US government worldwide.
“By putting light on this monitoring program – conducted in contravention of national laws and international agreements – Edward Snowden has helped to make the world a little bit better and safer…. He has also shown that individuals can stand up for fundamental rights and freedoms,” said the academic.
Svallfors highlighted the 30-year-old Snowden’s “heroic effort at great personal expense” when he leaked US surveillance operations.
“This example is important because since the Nuremberg trials in 1945, it has been clear that the slogan ‘I was just following orders’ is never claimed as an excuse for acts contrary to human rights and freedoms,” said Svallfors.
Snowden leaked information on massive surveillance programs by the NSA, including a major program known as PRISM used for tracking the use of US-based web servers by Americans and other nationals.
He also revealed additional documents showing that Washington spied on European Union offices, European citizens as well as companies and individuals in Latin America.
The sociology professor went on to urge the Nobel Committee to consider awarding the prize to Snowden.
“It would show its willingness to stand up in defense of civil liberties and human rights, even when such a defense be viewed with disfavor by the world’s dominant military power,” Svallfors concluded.
The Nobel Peace Prize was created by the efforts of the Swedish industrialist Alfred Nobel in 1901, and is awarded annually to the person or group that has “done the most or the best work for fraternity between nations, for the abolition or reduction of standing armies and for the holding and promotion of peace congresses. »