Statement from US Senate Speaker Nancy Pelosi

Statement from US Senate Speaker Nancy Pelosi

WASHINGTON, Oct. 24 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ — Speaker Nancy Pelosi issued the
following statement today on the European Parliament’s decision to award the
Sakharov Prize for Freedom of Thought to Hu Jia, a Chinese human rights
activist currently imprisoned by the Chinese government.

Since 1988, the Sakharov Prize has been awarded to individuals or
organizations for their efforts on behalf of human rights and fundamental
freedoms and against oppression and injustice. Past recipients of the prize
have included Nelson Mandela of South Africa and Aung San Suu Kyi of Burma.

“The announcement that Hu Jia has been awarded the Sakharov Prize for Freedom
of Thought is welcome news for all those who fight for freedom and human
rights in China and Tibet. In addition to advancing human rights, Hu has
diligently worked to raise awareness of the needs of AIDS patients and
environmental protection – issues the Chinese government must acknowledge. The
European Parliament is to be commended for its bold decision.

“Hu Jia is in prison for criticizing the Chinese government’s record on human
rights, most recently, his call on the international community to hold Beijing
responsible for its promises to improve these rights before the 2008 Summer
Olympics. He is risking his life, family and freedom so he can speak the
truth. I call on the Chinese government to immediately and unconditionally
release Hu Jia from prison and to respect the fundamental freedoms of all the
people in China.”
SOURCE Office of the Speaker of the House

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