NPR logo The Actual Award Of The Nobel Peace Prize May Be Skipped


The Actual Award Of The Nobel Peace Prize May Be Skipped

 In this Jan. 12, 2010 file photo, pro-democracy protesters hold a candle light vigil as they support jailed mainland Chinese dissident Liu Xiaobo, shown on a poster, in Hong Kong.  Vincent Yu/AP hide caption

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Vincent Yu/AP

The Nobel committee says it may end up not hand out the Nobel Peace Prize this year. Either the winner or a close family member must attend to receive the diploma, medal, and the $1.5 million dollar check. Liu Xiaobo is still in a Chinese prison and his wife is under house arrest.

The ceremony, set for December 10th, will still be held, with a presentation speech by the chair of the committee and text messages from Liu read by actress Liv Ullman.

China has gone well, ballistic might be the best word, over the award. From the NYT:

China has also warned foreign officials to stay away from the event next month or “bear the consequences,” as Cui Tiankai, China’s vice foreign minister, put it recently.

China summoned Norway's ambassador and said the prize will damage bi-lateral relations. Russia, Cuba and Kazakhstan will not be attending. Most Western countries will. Despite pressure from China, Japan says it will attend the ceremony. Korea is still debating whether to send a representative.

China has also cracked down on other human rights activists besides Liu and his wife, restricting their movements.