10 October 2010

China celebrates Liu Xiaobo Nobel Prize with arrests and error messages

There is no doubt that Jailed Chinese dissident Liu Xiaobo is a worthy recipient of the Nobel Peace prize – far more worthy than, many previous laureates. Needless to say the Chinese authorities were not best pleased.

There is little prospect of his being released from prison but now, according to the Globe and Mail, his wife, Liu Xia, has been placed under house arrest having been allowed to visit him over the weekend to tell him he was now a Nobel laureate, she is also prevented from using her mobile phone….

But not prevented from using Twitter…. “I’m under house arrest. I don’t know when I can meet you guys. My mobile phone was broken and I have no way to take calls,”
Many Chinese likely still have no idea that Mr. Liu has become the country’s first resident Nobel laureate. Those Chinese media that did make mention of the award ran only a small article from the official Xinhua news wire that quoted a foreign ministry official saying the award could hurt ties between Beijing and Oslo.

In a sign of how anxious Beijing is to prevent any public rallying around Mr. Liu’s award, police broke up two small gatherings of dissidents who had hoped to celebrate Mr. Liu’s victory over the weekend.

Nonetheless, news of Mr. Liu’s win – and the contents of Charter 08 – continued to spread online among China’s 420 million Internet users. Though search terms such as “Liu Xiaobo” and “Nobel Peace Prize” return only error messages, some Chinese internet users bravely reposted the contents of the Charter 08 for others to read.

“The government will certainly try all means to block [the news of Mr. Liu’s win], but we are in the Internet age, so it is impossible to block it completely,” said Wen Kejian, a Hangzhou-based writer who was among the first to sign Charter 08 when it was published in December 2008. “The Nobel Prize will surely help more people read and know what Liu has done, and to hear about Charter 08.”

I will add no glib comment to this article


susan said...

It's amazing to me just how brave and resourceful some people are.

Sean Jeating said...

Repeating myself: I am not sure whether I'd have given shelter to a Jew 70 years ago.
This is why I do admire (the more) people like Liu Xiabo, his wife and many others in many other countries.

Claude said...

It's great! He certainly was a worthy candidate for the Prize. He deserves the recognition. I just hope that it wasn't given mostly to enrage China. He, and everyone who signed the Charter 08, are in more danger than ever now.

As Sean is saying, I'm not sure I would have their courage. We can publicize their actions. But we cannot protect them. And we're not going to jail with them.

bobby fletcher said...

Liu Xiaobo has received hundreds of thousands of US government funding via the NED in the past five years to conduct domestic political activity in China (including advocating abolition of China’s constitution.) Check NED’s China grants for Independent Chinese Pen Center and Minzhu Zhongguo magazine, which Liu heads.

If Liu were American he would be in violation of FARA (Foreign Agent Registration Act). Ron Paul had once commented “What the NED does in foreign countries… would be rightly illegal in the United States”.

jams o donnell said...

It is Susan. I am not sure I could do a fraction of what he did

I aam with you on that Sean, I am not certain at all if I would have the courage

He is a worthy recipient Claude, no doubt. I hope the Chinese Govt is not as stupid as to act that way.

Bobby you are a broken record aren't you. I see that post every where.

Welshcakes Limoncello said...

I'm so heartened to learn that the régime's bully-boy tactics to keep the news suppressed aren't working.

jams o donnell said...

This is good news eh? Here's hoping things change

SnoopyTheGoon said...

A good man and a good woman, unquestionably. And Chinese government - I hope they all end up in the history's garbage bin.

jams o donnell said...

Well said, mon ami!