Whistleblower Edward Snowden has been elected to the historic position of Rector of the University of Glasgow.
The former NSA contractor came top of a ballot that was open to all students at the Scottish university and attracted a record number of votes. He will now serve a three-year term.
The Rector is officially expected to represent the interests of students to the university management, chair the university’s court and attend key functions throughout the university year.
But previous holders include anti-apartheid campaigner Winnie Mandela and Israeli nuclear whistleblower Mordechai Vanunu, who were never expected to take up their posts. Since Snowden risks deportation to the US if he steps foot in Scotland he is unlikely to fulfil his formal obligations.
The departing Rector is Charles Kennedy, former leader of the Liberal Democrats, who has taken an active interest in the role.
Snowden was put forward for the position following a campaign by students and accepted the nomination through his lawyers.