US whistleblower Edward Snowden has agreed to stand as a candidate for the post of rector at Glasgow University, it has emerged.
Snowden, currently seeking asylum in Russia, agreed to stand after being contacted by students at the university who managed to track him down through ‘interlocuters’.
The Edward Snowden for Rector campaign is urging “all student bodies committed to ending state intrusion into our private lives” to support Snowden’s candidacy and praised his “spirit of daring and self-sacrifice”.
A spokeswoman for Glasgow University told The Drum: “We have received nominations for the post of rector and I can confirm Edward Snowden is one of those names.”
A statement from the Edward Snowden for Rector Campaign said: "We are proud to announce that Edward Snowden, the whistleblower who revealed the extent of US and UK Government surveillance of all its citizens, and who is now fleeing the wrath of those he has exposed, has agreed to stand as a candidate in the election for student rector at Glasgow University.
"Edward Snowden’s candidacy is a unique opportunity to show our gratitude to a brave whistleblower, and thus all to other whistleblowers who take risks to reveal the criminality and corruption of powerful groups in the intelligence services and other arms of government, media, police, parliament, and military."
Snowden hit the headlines in the summer of 2013 after blowing the whistle on the spying and surveillance practices of the American security organisation the NSA.
Other people speculated to be in the running for the post, which is up for election every three years, are new Doctor Who and former The Thick Of It star Peter Capaldi, and athlete Graeme Obree.
Previous rectors include former Liberal Democrat leader Charles Kennedy, actor Ross Kemp, Scots comedian Greg Hemphill and trade union activist Jimmy Reid.