Nobel Peace Prize Awarded to Political Dissident Liu Xiaobo

Political dissident Liu Xiaobo will receive the 2010 Nobel Peace Prize, the committee announced this past Friday.

Liu Xiaobo has spent years fighting for freedom and government accountability in China and has consequently been in and out of prison and labor camps for the past two decades. The writer and former professor of literature went on a hunger strike during  the 1989 protests of Tiananmen Square and was imprisoned for “instigating counterrevoluntionary behavior.”

He is currently serving a strict 11 year prison sentence for co-writing and circulating Chapter 8, a petition calling for political reform and democracy. The manifesto was published in December 2008 to coincide with the 60th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Two days before the publication, Liu was taken from his home and charged with “suspicion of inciting subversion of state power.”

Last month, a senior Chinese official warned the Norwegian Nobel Institute that awarding Liu the prize would affect relations between China and Norway. The government contends it has no dissidents; there are only people who break the laws. However Nobel chairman Thorbjoern Jagland contends that as China grows more powerful, its human rights record needs to be under greater scrutiny, and that turning a blind eye would only undermine the award’s merit. “We have to speak when others cannot speak,” he explains.

The Guardian reports that several major Chinese media outlets had their sections dedicated to the Nobel Peace Prize removed. In Beijing, TV screens showing the BBC and CNN suddenly went blank when the prize recipient was announced. Even his wife Liu Xia, who earlier revealed that he was not even aware of his nomination since he is prohibited from accessing news of the outside world, was prevented from leaving her apartment to speak to reporters. She did however release a statement through a campaign group to express her gratitude. “It is a true honor for him and one for which I know he would say he is not worthy.”


Nicole C.
Past Member 7 years ago

He is a great man.

Bohm Judith
Judith K7 years ago

I salute this man. He is a much better choice than Obama last year. Obama has not done 10 % of what he has done for human rights. In fact he did not stop the patriot act, he suggested prolonged detention, etc.etc. And not to mention his lies about bringing the troops home. This guy is a real fighter, and has risked a lot. Obama is serving the lobbyists and himself. I wish the guy could come and pick up his prize personally.

Judith P.

This should put Obama to shame. This fellow really deserves the Nobel Peace Prize and has paid a huge price for it, and unfortunately will continue to do so. The Chinese should be shamed but now they have put the wife under a close watch making police accompany her everywhere. This is the country we do business with, yet will not recognize Cuba. (Still cannot figure that out.)
They demand this man not mention Tienanmen Square when hundreds were killed by the Chinese for demanding democracy.
"However Nobel chairman Thorbjoern Jagland contends that as China grows more powerful, its human rights record needs to be under greater scrutiny, and that turning a blind eye would only undermine the award's merit. "We have to speak when others cannot speak," he explains."
I do not understand why we reestablished relationship with China given their human rights record, but now seeing all the jobs and businesses that have moved there I guess it is all right as long as businesses can use their people and environment to make money. It is always about money. You can tell our human rights are not as they used to be, we are taking on the Chinese model. (Thinking about the Patriot Act and many Executive Orders, and pending legislation like Liebermans which would cause an American to lose their citizenship if they were accused of a crime, no trial needed.)

Timber P.
Timber Prater7 years ago

congragulations lui you deserve it :)

Claire Sayers
Claire Sayers7 years ago

He is very worthy of this award. I also think that Norway should pay no attention to what the Chinese government believes regarding him.

Bass D.
Bass D.7 years ago

He deserves the honor and the committee did a great job to choose him.

Shalvah L.
Past Member 7 years ago

Congratulations Mr. Liu Xiaobo! I hope you are released quickly by the Chinese government.
I also congratulate the Norwegians for standing up to China! In keeping of the spirit of the prize!

David M.
David M.7 years ago

Did the Chinese 'Government' seriously believe that the Norwegian Ambassador, or anyone else, would take their outrage at what they called an 'obscenity' seriously. Delighted to see Liu Xiaobo wining the Nobel Prize and attention drawn to the 'obscene' human rights abuses in China.

Mrs Shakespeare
Mrs Shakespeare7 years ago

After what the Japanese did in China, you'd expect the Chinese authorities to be kind to their people. They have suffered a lot, and a good percentage of them still suffer today because of poverty and over population, but does the government care? No, because they are too busy throwing men like Xiaobo behind bars. Good job.

Ben Oscarsito
Ben O7 years ago

Free Liu Xiaobo NOW!