Press release
8 October 2010

ICPC Statement on Dr. Liu Xiaobo Awarded to the Nobel Peace Prize

Independent Chinese PEN Centre (ICPC) is extremely happy to have heard today that Dr. Liu Xiaobo, its Honorary President, is awarded to the Nobel Peace Prize for 2010, and expresses our heartfelt congratulations, and sincere thanks to all of those in China and overseas who have called, promoted and supported him for the prize and who have been concerned about his conviction and sentencing for his words.

Liu Xiaobo is a prominent writer, literary critic and human rights activist. Since 1980s, he has been engaged in promoting freedom to write, human rights and democracy in China. Over the last 20 years, he has always upheld his rational and peaceful stand to speak against the autocracy but for the civilians, and been committed to the campaigns to broaden freedom of expression in China and open up the spaces for the civil society and constitutional reform there, with no fear about imprisonment, surveillance, harassment and suppression. He has challenged the modern literary inquisition and so been imprisoned several times without regrets for his conviction for his words. In 1989, he was detained for one and half year for his support to the students-led peaceful protests though more sacrifices from the violent crackdown were avoided on TianAnMen Square in Beijing; in 1996, he was sentenced to three years Re-education Through Labour for his opposition to the China’s military threat against Taiwan and calling for peaceful negotiations across the Taiwan Strait; In 2001, he was one of the co-founders of ICPC, the first association of independent writers with its basic aims at defending freedom of expression and being committed to the assistance for the writers convicted for their words under Communist Party’s rule. He was elected ICPC president in 2003-2007 and its Board member until his arrest on 8 December 2008, the eve of 60th anniversary of Universal Declaration of Human Rights for his participation in launching Charter 08 advocating a peaceful campaign for constitutional democracy in China, and then given a heavy sentences of eleven years in prison the following year. Upholding freedom to confront autocracy, equality to challenge privilege, brotherhood to oppose hatred, and peace to resist violence, Liu Xiaobo has reached the state that “great love has no borders” and that “the benevolent has no enemies”, and become a model for the people as well as the pride of PEN.

His persistent, indomitable non-violent struggle has won the recognition and support from various people in China to International PEN on behalf of tens of thousands of writers worldwide, including the president of PEN American Center Professor Appiah and other internationally renowned writers, former Czech President Vaclav Havel and other democratic/human rights activists and politicians, Nobel Peace Prize laureates the Dalai Lama, Archbishop Desmond Tutu and others. As many as hundreds of those individuals nominated him for the Nobel Peace Prize. Therefore, awarding him today is not only the popular sentiments and everyone’s will but also enhances the reputation and glory of Nobel Peace Prize. After Carl von Ossietzky, German pacifist writer, was awarded in 1936 to the prize for 1935, Liu Xiaobo has become the second laureate in prison while being awarded a Nobel Prize in its history of 110 years. ICPC is sharing the happiness and celebration with all of our colleagues of International PEN and others who have supported the nomination, and stand in solidarity together with Liu Xiaobo as always to promote the cause of liberalization and democratization in China.

At the same time, ICPC urges Chinese authorities to be aware of the trend of world civilization, not as what Hitler did after Carl von Ossietzky got the prize but rather the opposite, to immediately and unconditionally release Nobel Peace Prize laureate Liu Xiaobo, release PEN members Yang Tongyan, Shi Tao, Du Daobin and all of those imprisoned due to the conviction for their words, and release all of the prisoners of conscience for their peaceful
exercise of basic civil rights.

International PEN is the oldest human rights organization and international literary organization. The Independent Chinese PEN Center is among its 145 member centers and aims to protect writers’ freedom of expression and freedom to write worldwide and advocates for the rights of writers and journalists who are imprisoned, threatened, persecuted or harassed in China particularly.

For more information, contact
Tienchi Liao, President, +49 176 5472 3721
or
Dr. Yu Zhang, Executive Secretary and WiPC Coordinator
Independent Chinese PEN Center (ICPC)
Tel: +46-8-50022792
Email: secretariat@chinesepen.org, wipc@comhem.se
Websites: http://www.chinesepen.org and http://www.liuxiaobo.eu/

独立中文笔会关于刘晓波荣获诺贝尔和平奖的声明
(2010年10月8日)

6

独立中文笔会欣闻本会荣誉会长刘晓波博士今天荣获2010年度诺贝尔和平奖,在此表达我们的衷心祝贺,并向所有呼吁、推动和支持他获奖以及关注他因言获罪判刑的海内外各界人士表示诚挚的感谢。

刘晓波博士是中国著名作家、文学评论家和人权活动家,自1980年代起投身于自由写作和争取人权、民主的活动,20多年来始终坚持批评专制、面向民间的和平理性立场,致力于争取扩大中国的言论自由、开拓公民社会和宪政改革的空间,无惧监禁、监控、骚扰、打压,挑战现代文字狱恶法,多次因言获罪遭监禁而无怨无悔。1989年,他因支持学生和平抗议并避免暴力冲突牺牲而系狱一年半;1996年,他因反对大陆对台湾的武力威胁并呼吁海峡两岸和平协商被劳教三年;2001年,他参与创建本会——中国共产党统治下第一个以维护言论自由为基本宗旨并致力于救助因言获罪写作者的独立作家团体,2003-2007年担任会长,此后继任理事直至再次被捕;2008年12月8日,“世界人权宣言”六十周年前夕,他因参与发起联署倡导和平民主宪政运动的《零八宪章》又遭监禁,次年被判重刑达十一年。以自由冲击专制,以平等挑战特权,以博爱抗拒仇恨,以和平抵制暴力。刘晓波博士已经进入了“大爱无疆”、“仁者无敌”的境界,实为国人之楷模,笔会之骄傲。他坚韧不拔、不屈不饶的非暴力抗争,得到了从中国国内各界人士到国际笔会所代表的全世界数万作家的认同和支持,包括美国笔会会长阿皮亚教授等世界著名作家、捷克前总统哈维尔等等各国人权民主运动活动家和政治家、达赖喇嘛和图图主教等诺贝尔和平奖前得主,高达数百人提名他获诺尔贝和平奖。由此,他今天获奖实乃人心所向,众望所归,也为和平奖增添了光彩和荣耀,成为德国和平主义作家卡尔·冯·阿希厄茨基获1935年度奖项后,诺贝奖110年历史上第二位正在坐牢的得主。独立中文笔会在此与国际笔会全体同仁以及支持提名的各界人士同喜同贺,并一如既往地与刘晓波博士站在一起,共同致力于推动中国的自由和民主化事业。

同时,独立中文笔会呼吁中国当局认清世界文明潮流,不要像当年希特勒得知阿希厄茨基获奖后那样继续倒行逆施,而应反其道而行之,立即无条件释放诺贝尔和平奖得主刘晓波博士,释放笔会会员杨天水、师涛、杜导斌等所有因言获罪者,释放因和平行使基本公民权利的所有良心犯。

国际笔会是世界上最悠久的人权组织和国际性文学组织,致力推进世界各地作家间的友谊和理性合作,为言论自由奋斗,代表世界文学的良知。独立中文笔会是国际笔会的145个分会之一,抗议中国当局对作家和新闻工作者的监禁、骚扰、监控,致力于结束中国对互联网的监控和对自由写作的种种限制。关于笔会致力于保护作家和维护言论自由和有关刘晓波博士的更多信息,请参见
http://www.chinesepen.org and http://www.liuxiaobo.eu/。