China has lashed out at the European Parliament for awarding a
prestigious human rights prize to jailed Chinese dissident Hu Jia.
says Thursday's decision to award Hu the Sakharov Prize for Freedom of
Thought was interference in its internal affairs. China's Foreign
Ministry referred to the activist as a "jailed criminal."
Hu's wife welcomed news of the award and said she believes her husband would be happy because his work was being validated.
Hu was arrested last December, and later sentenced to three-and-a-half years in prison for allegedly subverting state power.
detained him after he testified about China's human rights record via
phone to the European Parliament's human rights subcommittee.
European parliament's president, Hans-Gert Poettering, says it believes
that giving the award to Hu would send a signal of clear support to
those working for human rights in China.
Hu Jia has campaigned for civil rights, environmental protection and AIDS advocacy in China.
Sakharov Prize is named after the late Soviet physicist and human
rights activist Andrei Sakharov, who won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1975.
Some information for this report was provided by AFP, AP and Reuters.