Edward Snowden elected rector of Glasgow University


Edward Snowden.


via The Guardian

Intelligence whistleblower Edward Snowden was elected the new rector of Glasgow University on Tuesday.

Snowden, the former National Security Agency contractor whose revelations about UK and US surveillance practices have sparked controversy worldwide, beat out three other candidates for the three-year post.

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He will succeed the Liberal Democrat's former leader Charles Kennedy.

The rector is elected to represent students to senior management at the university, chairing the university's ruling court.

Previous rectors have included Israeli nuclear whistleblower Mordecai Vanunu and Winnie Madikizela-Mandela.

Other candidates for the post this year included cyclist Graeme Obree, author Alan Bissett and Scottish Episcopal clergyman Kelvin Holdsworth.

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"We're giving students a stage, a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to voice their own discontent with mass surveillance. By electing Edward Snowden, we're sending a clear message, also to our government, that we will not allow this kind of surveillance," Lubna Nowak, a member of Snowden's campaign, told The Guardian.

Snowden is unlikely to take up his post in person, having fled his US homeland last May after the surveillance revelations became public.

He currently has temporary asylum in Russia.