Although he was passed over for the Nobel Peace Prize, activist Hu Jia was just awarded the Sakharov Prize, Europe's most prestigious human rights award today.
His name was chosen by the European Parliament, that saw him testify last year via a video link about China's human rights situation.
Weeks after that he was jailed and then sentenced for three-and-a-half years in prison for subversion based on his criticism of the Communist Party rule.
Hu's award comes just days before the European Union comes to Beijing this weekend for the Asia-Europe Summit, mostly to discuss the global financial crisis.
And this has no doubt riled up Chinese hosts, who may try to show their displeasure of Hu's recognition.
Song Zhe, Chinese ambassador to the EU wrote to the president of the European Parliament saying, "If the European Parliament should award this prize to Hu Jia, that would inevitably hurt the Chinese people once again and bring serious damage to China-EU relations."
And Foreign Ministry spokesman Qin Gang had described him as a convicted criminal.
As Hu sits in jail, his wife Zeng Jinyan is under house arrest with their infant daughter, living under difficult conditions.
What has Hu done to cause such outrage from the government?
Early in his career he planted trees to stop desertification in Inner Mongolia; he has helped those suffering from HIV/AIDS in Henan province; and he has given voice to those who were lawfully wronged through the Internet.
And the Chinese government is afraid of one person?
He is trying to right wrongs in the society -- to make it righteous and harmonious.
What is wrong with that?