The world’s newest Nobel Peace Prize winner remained unreachable in a Chinese prison Saturday, while his wife’s mobile phone was cut off and the authoritarian government continued to censor reports about democracy campaigner Liu Xiaobo’s honor.
Police kept reporters away from the prison where Liu is serving an 11-year sentence for subversion, and his lawyer said that Liu’s wife — who had been hoping to visit him Saturday and tell him the news of the award — has “disappeared” and he is worried she may be in police custody.
Chinese authorities, who called Liu a criminal shortly after his award Friday and said his winning “desecrates the prize,” sank Saturday into official silence.
Only an editorial in the state-run Global Times newspaper spoke out Saturday, saying in English, “Obviously, the Nobel Peace Prize this year is meant to irritate China, but it will not succeed. On the contrary, the committee disgraced itself.”
The paper’s Chinese-language edition called the award “an arrogant showcase of Western ideology” and said it disrespected the Chinese people.
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