Snowden Nominated for Coveted Human Rights Prize
In running for Europe's Sakharov Prize
By Evann Gastaldo, Newser Staff
Posted Sep 17, 2013 12:43 PM CDT
This photo, taken June 9, 2013, in Hong Kong, provided by The Guardian Newspaper in London shows Edward Snowden.   (AP Photo/The Guardian)

(Newser) – Past winners of the Sakharov Prize, a human rights prize for freedom of thought, include Nelson Mandela and Aung San Suu Kyi—and soon Edward Snowden could join their ranks. The NSA leaker is one of seven nominees for the prize this year after getting a nod from the Greens in the European Parliament, Reuters reports. "Edward Snowden has risked his freedom to help us protect ours and he deserves to be honored for shedding light on the systematic infringements of civil liberties by US and European secret services," say the leaders of the left-leaning party in a statement.

Also nominated, per UPI: Malala Yousafzai, who was shot by the Taliban in Pakistan for her education activism; Mikhail Khodorkovsky, a jailed former oil tycoon from Russia who has criticized Vladimir Putin; two Ethiopian journalists imprisoned for criticizing their government; three Belarusian dissidents jailed for protesting election fraud; and Erdem Gunduz, who helped spark protests in Turkey. A shortlist will be chosen by September 30, and parliamentary leaders will name the winner on October 10.

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Sep 26, 2013 12:09 AM CDT
LOL, wow. We should ALL get awards for stating the obvious and "blowing the whistle" about things that are already common knowledge. Why not?
Sep 17, 2013 5:39 PM CDT
A prize? What has Special Ed done that's "wrong"?: 1) Theft 2) False credentials 3) Tampering with national security 4) Placing all Americans at risk 5) International flight 6) Traveling on a voided passport 7) Bartering with items/information he doesn't legally own nor has personally created 8) Terroristic threats 9) Unethical treatment toward his employer 10) Misrepresentation 11) Perjury/breach of oath 12) Dereliction of duty 13) Failure to follow orders. 14) Impersonation of known government officials/identity theft. He's also flirting with, in fact, trying to set up the two main offenses: A) Assisting foreign powers B) Aiding the enemy. Sure, the Constitution guarantees our freedom to share more information with the public, and the right to free speech is great... but NOT when it will cause a danger to National Security. The info Snowjob likely possesses is probably EXACTLY the kind of stuff al Qaeda wants leaked out so they can learn better of how to successfully find ways to kill Americans at will. Not to mention, maybe names and locations of counter-terrorism spies that the U.S. has out in the field infiltrating the ranks of those would-be murderers. People want to complain about the NSA and alleged "spying", but then they'll also complain about not feeling the government is doing enough to protect them from al Qaeda! So the NSA is not "hiding" anything, but they'll be truly ineffective if EVERYONE knows what they're working on. Has NOBODY stopped for a moment and asked "why" the NSA has been doing what they're doing? Did people think the authorities use magic to uncover terrorist plots?
Sep 17, 2013 3:58 PM CDT
Malala by a landslide. She risked death by speaking truth to power in a country/culture where she had none. Snowden spoke truth to power from a transit lounge in Moscow, accepting protection from a government guilty of setting the standard for lying to and spying upon its people. Malala exercised freedom of thought with courage, endured serious consequences for her courage, and continues to defy those who would silence her. Snowden exercise freedom of thought with a careful eye toward self-preservation and quickly "stood down" when his self-preservation was threatened. None of this is to diminish the importance of Snowden's actions to make information available to the world. His situation is ambiguous, however, as he also broke laws and ran from the consequences of having done so. Malala is unambiguously a courageous individual.