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Peace Prize for Snowden

Nomination of Edward Joseph Snowden for the 2014 Nobel Peace Prize



To the attention of the Norwegian Nobel Committee: We hereby wish to nominate Mr Edward Joseph Snowden (born 21 June 1983) for the 2014 Nobel Peace Prize for his unique contribution to the advancement of democratic values and the global consciousness of human interdependency and interconnectedness, which are conditions for universal peace. In June 2013, we all discovered the face of a young man, who had overnight become an icon of state treason for some and a heroic defender of the most basic freedoms for many more. When he disclosed and published documents on secret services tapping the internet, phone calls and other communications data, Mr Snowden shed light on the largest and most systematic privacy violations the “free world” had seen in decades. A former technical contractor for the US National Security Agency (NSA) and CIA employee, Mr Snowden leaked thousands of NSA documents revealing deeply intrusive and illegal programmes of mass phone and internet interception to the UK daily The Guardian in May 2013, before fleeing to Hong Kong and subsequently being granted temporary asylum in Russia. Since the 9/11 tragedy and the initiation of a “Global War on Terror” by successive US governments and their allies in Europe and elsewhere, some national governments have grown increasingly intrusive in their handling of security matters. In the name of “peace” and “security”, many fundamental freedoms, notably freedom of expression and the right to privacy, are threatened and in some cases even trampled on. The (ongoing) NSA exposure has had colossal repercussions globally, including initiating intensive public debates on government secrecy, privacy, data protection, corporate complicity and on the limits of domestic and foreign surveillance. His act has also triggered the launch of parliamentary inquiries into the scope and legality of eavesdropping programmes, the review of the entire US intelligence and communications gathering technologies, major diplomatic incidents with the grounding and search of the plane of Bolivian President  Morales and serious incidents against basic media freedoms in the United Kingdom. In doing so, Mr Snowden took great risks for his own personal safety. He had to leave behind his career, his country and his loved ones. The violence of some official reactions demonstrates that he hit a deeply sensitive point in the current practices of many governments and state organisations. He has truly become, one step farther than his forerunners Julian Assange and Chelsea Manning, the very face of a major fault in our democratic systems. His action has immensely contributed to the advancement of democratic values and the global consciousness of our interdependency and interconnectedness, and hence of universal peace. And for all those reasons, he deserves the consideration of the Norwegian Nobel Committee to be honoured for the Nobel Peace Prize. Yours sincerely, Rebecca Harms
Daniel Cohn-Bendit
Jan Philipp Albrecht
Ska Keller
José Bové