October 9, 2010

Nobel Peace Prize awarded to China dissident Liu Xiaobo

Mr Liu, 54, who was a key leader in the Tienanmen Square protest in 1989, was jailed for 11 years in Christmas Day last year for drafting Charter 08, which called for multiparty democracy in China.

A lot of people, namely Chinese, are claiming the award is a personal attack on the Chinese culture and demanding (in fact, warning) the Nobel Peace Prize judges to not grant the award..or else. 

China has already warned Norway that prospective trade agreements will be somewhat 'taut' if they proceed with the award while others, some not Chinese, are questioning whether a "convicted criminal" should even be awarded such a prominent prize. 

To answer the latter, doesn't one have to define "crime" beforehand? Is it criminal for someone in any country to simple write about a possibly better future? If so, I have seriously cooked my goose. Furthermore and in answer to these trade agreement threats - this is the second time I have referred to them today. India is up in arms with New Zealand over a TV host's comments (posted previously) and threatened the government with 'taut' trade agreements as well, and now this. Is it possible to separate the two? Sure, be pissed off about something but keep the trade thing out of it? I certainly hope so because otherwise this entire world will turn into a bunch of sniffling weasels all too scared to maintain their individuality at the risk of offending someone holding a cheque book. 

Good on Norway for sticking to its guns on this issue and well done to Liu for winning this award. I can only hope China comes to their senses and release this man so, at least, he can collect the award and maybe live in peace with this family and that handsome sum of money. 

The prize comes with a $1.5 million award which, if he's allowed out of jail, will be presented to him, along with the award in December. Last year's winner was Barack Obama. 

1 comment:

  1. NZ Prime Minister...from lions in opposition to lamb chops on a plate...



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