The imprisoned Chinese dissident won the Nobel “for his long and non-violent struggle for fundamental human rights in China,” the Norwegian Nobel Committee said.
A strong spokesman for the application of fundamental human rights in China, Liu was sentenced to 11 years in prison late in 2009 for inciting subversion of state power. Leading author of “Charter 08”, a manifesto for political reform and human rights in China, Liu also took part in the Tiananmen protests in 1989.
(More on TIME.com: See pictures of Liu Xiaobo.)
The prize is likely to anger the Chinese government, which warned the Nobel committee about giving the award to Liu.
The Norwegian Nobel Committee concluded that “Through the severe punishment meted out to him, Liu Xiaobo has become the foremost symbol of this wide-ranging struggle for human rights in China.”
CNN reports that as the news of Liu’s win broke their broadcast experienced a black out in China.