Celebrated Chinese author and activist Dai Qing has announced that she will attend the Nobel Peace Prize ceremony if the Chinese government doesn’t release the winner, Liu Xiaobo, from prison and his wife, Liu Xia, from house arrest and allow them and other deserving Chinese friends and colleagues to attend. Ms. Dai’s announcement comes after Liu Xia issued an open letter, now widely circulated on the Internet, urging over 140 “dear friends and peers,” including Ms. Dai, to attend the December 10 ceremony in Oslo.
Several parties on the list have been detained, including Liu Xia. Most invitees live in China and have little hope of being able to leave. Ms. Dai happens to be out of the country participating in academic conferences in Canada.
“I shall tell the world that it is not true that no Chinese citizen who fights against authoritarianism will be able to attend the grand ceremony in Oslo. If necessary, I will go there to fulfill my duty to my friend,” she says in her article.
In addition to barring its citizens from attending, the Chinese government has launched an effort to discredit the Nobel Committee and to discourage representatives of foreign governments from attending. It recently sent letters to western ambassadors in Oslo, warning them against attending or even sending congratulatory messages.
Read Dai Qing’s letter announcing her decision to attend the event, here.
Read Probe International’s translation of Liu Xia’s letter, here.
Read Dai Qing’s article, first published in the National Post, “The illusion of China’s rise” here.
News Coverage of Dai Qing’s Announcement:
- China dissident writer to attend Nobel ceremony (AFP)
- China Activist Pledges to Attend Nobel Ceremony (Wall Street Journal)
- In China, the Crackdown on Activists Continues (TIME)
- Chinese activist to attend Nobel award for jailed dissident (Irish Times)
News about Liu Xiaobo’s lawyer being prevented from visiting Britain:
- Liu Xiaobo’s lawyer blocked from visiting Britain (Daily Telegraph)
- China bans Liu Xiaobo’s lawyer from flying to UK (Guardian)
- Lawyer linked to Nobel winner says barred from leaving China (AFP)
- Police stop rights lawyer from leaving China (deutsche press agency)
- Nobel winner Liu Xiaobo’s lawyer ‘to sue China’ (BBC)