CAIRO – A South African organization has announced that an Egyptian rights campaigner won its Nelson Mandela award for individual activism for 2017.
Civicus says in a posting on his website late on Monday that Khaled el-Balshy, a former board member of Egypt's Journalists' Union, will receive the Individual Activist award of the Nelson Mandela - Graca Machel Innovation Awards on Dec. 7 in Fiji.
It says el-Balshy "has boldly and relentlessly pursued the cause of free speech, despite facing personal judicial and online harassment."
El-Balshy was handed a year-long suspended sentence in March, along with the former head of the union and another board member, over charges of "harboring fugitives."
Egypt under President Abdel-Fatah el-Sissi is the third-largest jailer of journalists in the world, according to the Committee to Protect Journalists.