The European Parliament announced last week that NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden is one of seven nominees for the 2013 Sakharov Prize for Freedom of Thought.
Snowden was nominated on behalf of the Greens/EFA and GUE/NGL parties. 
“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,” says the Greens/EFA in a statement.
“Instead of being given asylum in the EU, he has been abandoned by cowardly European governments. We hope our nomination will receive wide support in the European Parliament and that this can serve as a symbol of rejection of this gross, massive and illegal intrusion into the privacy of citizens worldwide”, the Greens added.
In the past the Sakharov Prize was been awarded to former President of South Africa Nelson Mandela, Soviet dissident author Anatoly Marchenko and political activist Oswaldo Payá.
Journalist Glenn Greenwald, who is responsible for reporting on a large portion of the leaked documents provided by Edward Snowden, highlighted the whistleblower's nomination in a tweet last Tuesday.
The winner of the award will be chosen next month and will receive a 50,000 euro ($65,000) award.
 http://www.europarl.europa.eu/news/en/news-room/content/20130916IPR20013/html/2013-Sakharov-Prize-for-Freedom-of-Thought-seven-nominations [2013 Sakharov Prize for Freedom of Thought - seven nominations]
 http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-202_162-57603219/edward-snowden-malala-yousafzai-among-candidates-for-european-unions-top-human-rights-prize/ [Edward Snowden, Malala Yousafzai among candidates for European Union's top human rights prize AP]
Paul Lawrance writes for Eyes Open Report where this first appeared.