Open

Coming up

Don't miss

Replay


LATEST SHOWS

MEDIAWATCH

'New York Post' slammed for publishing ISIS execution images

Read more

DEBATE

Back to Square One?

Read more

DEBATE

Israel-Gaza: Back to Square One?

Read more

DEBATE

Israel-Gaza conflict: 72-hour ceasefire deal sets stage for Cairo talks

Read more

WEB NEWS

Web users divided over Darren Wilson

Read more

FOCUS

Spain's El Hierro to become world's first self-powered island

Read more

IN THE PAPERS

A bellwether for what not to do

Read more

ENCORE!

Luc Besson back in action with Scarlett Johansson in 'Lucy'

Read more

FOCUS

Israel's minorities and military service

Read more

  • US forces tried to rescue slain reporter from IS captors

    Read more

  • Israeli air strike kills three top Hamas commanders

    Read more

  • Interactive: Relive the Liberation of Paris in WWII

    Read more

  • Thailand coup leader Prayuth Chan-ocha voted prime minister

    Read more

  • Deadly street battles hit Ukrainian rebel stronghold

    Read more

  • US attorney general visits Missouri town after fatal shooting

    Read more

  • French village rallies behind besieged elderly British couple

    Read more

  • Brazil’s Silva launches bid after Campos plane crash death

    Read more

  • Netanyahu compares Hamas to IS, Gaza offensive to continue

    Read more

  • Brutal IS beheading video sparks social media pushback

    Read more

  • France’s ex-PM Juppé sets up presidential clash with Sarkozy

    Read more

  • France’s Hollande says global security ‘worst since 2001’

    Read more

  • France urges Iran, others in region, to join fight against IS

    Read more

  • A new view on Normandy landings, 70 years on

    Read more

  • Dozens killed as landslides strike Japan’s Hiroshima

    Read more

Asia-pacific

Six countries won’t attend Nobel ceremony for Chinese dissident

Text by News Wires

Latest update : 2010-11-18

Six Oslo ambassadors from countries including Cuba, Russia and Iraq have turned down their invitation to attend the Nobel Peace Prize ceremony in honour of jailed Chinese dissident Liu Xiaobo next month, after pressure from China not to attend.

 

REUTERS - Six countries declined invitations to the Dec. 10 Nobel Peace Prize ceremony for jailed Chinese dissident Liu Xiaobo after an unprecedented campaign by China to sabotage attendance, the Norwegian Nobel Committee told Reuters.
 
The six nations that declined are Russia, Kazakhstan, Cuba, Morocco, Iraq and China itself. They gave no reason for declining, said Geir Lundestad, secretary of the Norwegian Nobel Committee, which awards the accolade.
 
China has sent letters to foreign ministries and embassies urging diplomats to stay away from the ceremony in Oslo and warning of "consequences" for those who support the pro-democracy activist.
 
Lundestad said China had mounted a campaign to persuade diplomats to avoid the awards ceremony in Oslo, and had returned all mail sent by the Committee unopened.
 
"I don't know of any example where a country has so actively and directly tried to have ambassadors stay away from a Nobel ceremony," he told Reuters.
 
Another 16 countries had not replied to the invitation by the committee's extended deadline of Thursday morning but might still reply later and attend, Lundestad said on Thursday.
 
"China is not the only factor in this," Lundestad added. "There are always some ambassadors that don't come for some reason, and they don't have to say why."
 
"The big question this year is China, and how China is able to affect the decisions of others," he said. "Several countries have to check with their home governments .... This has become a delicate issue with some governments."
 
The Nobel Committee sent invitations to 58 countries with embassies in Norway, and 36 have accepted.
 
No shows
 
According to an Asian diplomat, the Vietnamese, Philippine and Indonesian envoys to Norway will not attend.
 
Hanoi's will not come because the dissident Vietnamese Buddhist monk Thich Quang Do was nominated for the 2010 prize, while the Philippine and Indonesian ambassadors will be travelling at the time, the diplomat said.
 
Lundestad confirmed that Vietnam was among the 16 countries that did not reply to the invitation.
 
There was no comment from the Russian, Kazakh and Cuban embassies in Oslo.
 
Among those who have not yet confirmed their attendance are India and South Africa.
A spokesman for the Indian embassy in Norway told Reuters he "was not in a position to give an answer", while a spokeswoman for the South African embassy said: "We are still awaiting instructions from our head office."
 
Earlier this week a Japanese government spokesman in Tokyo said its ambassador to Norway would attend.
 
Even with some diplomatic no-shows, Lundestad said, he expected 1,000 or so admirers of Liu Xiaobo to attend the ceremony at Oslo City Hall.
 
However, because Lundestad says Liu's family appears to have been denied permission to travel -- his wife has been held under virtual house arrest since the prize was announced -- the committee intends to hold on to the medal, diploma and cheque for 10 million Swedish crowns ($1.46 million).

 

Date created : 2010-11-18

  • CHINA

    UN chief under fire for failing to press China on jailed Nobel winner

    Read more

  • CHINA

    Wife of Nobel peace laureate hopes to attend ceremony

    Read more

  • NOBEL PRIZE

    Chinese media slams dissident's win of Nobel Peace Prize

    Read more

COMMENT(S)