Edward Snowden shortlisted for EU's Sakharov prize

Edward Snowden Edward Snowden said he was grateful for the nomination

Related Stories

Edward Snowden, the fugitive American former intelligence worker, has made the shortlist of three for the Sakharov prize, Europe's top human rights award.

Mr Snowden was nominated by Green politicians in the European Parliament for leaking details of US surveillance.

Nominees also include Malala Yousafzai, the Pakistani teenager shot in the head for demanding education for girls.

Former recipients of the prize, awarded by the European Parliament, include Nelson Mandela and Aung San Suu Kyi.

Mr Snowden's nomination recognised that his disclosure of US surveillance activities was an "enormous service" to human rights and European citizens, the parliament's Green group said.

Snowden, who has sought asylum in Russia, said in a statement read out in parliament that he was grateful to Europe's politicians for "taking up the challenge of mass surveillance".

"The surveillance of whole populations, rather than individuals, threatens to be the greatest human rights challenge of our time," he said.

The Sakharov prize for freedom of thought is awarded annually in memory of Andrei Sakharov, a Soviet scientist and dissident.

The winner of this year's prize will be announced on 10 October.

The third nominee for the award is a group of Belarusian political dissidents jailed in 2010 for protesting against the disputed re-election of President Alexander Lukashenko.

The group includes activists Ales Bialiatski, Eduard Lobau and former presidential candidate Mykola Statkevich.

Mr Bialiatski was also named as the first person to receive the Council of Europe's Vaclav Havel human rights prize, worth €61,000 (£50,000, $81,000).

More on This Story

Related Stories

More Europe stories

RSS

Features

  • Two sphinxes guarding the entrance to the tombTomb mystery

    Secrets of ancient burial site keep Greeks guessing


  • The chequeBig gamble

    How does it feel to bet £900,000 on the Scottish referendum?


  • Tattooed person using tabletRogue ink

    People who lost their jobs because of their tattoos


  • Deepika PadukoneBeauty and a tweet

    Bollywood cleavage row shows India's 'crass' side


  • Relief sculpture of MithrasRoman puzzle

    How to put London's mysterious underground temple back together


BBC © 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.