A Swedish professor has nominated NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden for the Nobel Peace Prize for revealing the extent of the NSA's vast surveillance program "in a heroic effort at great personal cost."
In his letter to the Nobel Peace Prize Committee, Stefan Svallfors, a professor of sociology at Sweden's Umeå University, added that awarding the prize to Snowden would "also help to save the Nobel Peace Prize from the disrepute that incurred by the hasty and ill-conceived decision to award U.S. President Barack Obama 2009 award."
In revealing the extent of the NSA's extensive spying, "conducted in contravention of national laws and international agreements," Snowden "has helped to make the world a little better and safer," the professor writes. He "has also shown that individuals can stand up for fundamental rights and freedoms."
Mejlar till Norska Nobelkommittén. pic.twitter.com/RCYqxHvOyO
— Stefan Svallfors (@StefanSvallfors) July 13, 2013
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"I did what I believed right and began a campaign to correct this wrongdoing," Snowden told representatives from international human rights groups on Friday at Moscow's Sheremetyevo airport.
"I did not seek to enrich myself," he said. "I did not seek to sell US secrets. I did not partner with any foreign government to guarantee my safety. Instead, I took what I knew to the public, so what affects all of us can be discussed by all of us in the light of day, and I asked the world for justice."
According to the criteria listed on the official site of the Nobel Prize, the nomination of Snowden is considered valid because Svallfors is a professor of a social science, though it may have to be considered for 2014 because the February deadline for 2013 nominees has passed.
The names of Nobel laureates are announced in October.
The award ceremony for the Nobel Peace Prize takes place in Oslo, Norway, a country where Snowden made an unsuccessful bid for asylum.
Snowden joins two other previous nominees for the prize who have been demonized for revealing U.S. wrongdoing: Julian Assange and Bradley Manning.