The Chinese government has lashed out at the announcement of Liu Xiaobo’s prize, who is sentenced to 11 years in a Chinese prison.
The 54-year-old writer was detained in December 2008, shortly before the release of Charter 08 – a manifesto he helped organize that calls for sweeping political reform.
Patrick Poon, of the Independent Chinese PEN Center, a writers’ group that Liu has previously headed, says he thinks a hard-line from the Chinese government will actually inspire more people to speak out.
China has long been at the fore when it comes to human rights violations and their handling of this situation could spark a groundswell within a government that restricts Internet access.
In fact, most news of Liu Xiaobo’s Nobel Peace Prize win has been suppressed in the country.
The Chinese government’s reaction was swift and unequivocal. A statement on the Chinese Foreign Ministry’s website called the award “an obscenity” that goes against the aims of the award. It warned the award also will hurt China’s relations with Norway, the country where the Nobel Committee is based.