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Egypt and 18 other countries to miss Nobel ceremony

Egypt and 18 other countries decline invitation to the Nobel Peace Prize ceremony honoring Chinese dissident Liu Xiaobo.

Ahram Online, AP and Reuters , Tuesday 7 Dec 2010
Liu Xiaobo and his wife Liu Xia
Chinese dissident Liu Xiaobo and his wife Liu Xia pose in this undated photo released by his family on October 3, 2010. China and 18 other countries have declined invitations to attend Friday's Nobel Peace Prize ceremony for Liu, the Norwegian Nobel Committee said on December 7, 2010. REUTERS
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Egypt and 18 other countries will not attend the Nobel Peace Prize ceremony honoring Chinese dissident Liu Xiaobo, officials said in an announcement that followed a Chinese campaign to dissuade diplomats from showing up.

Representatives of different embassies, including those of Egypt, Russia, Pakistan, Serbia, Iran, Venezuela, Cuba, Saudi Arabia, Kazakhstan, Ukraine and Colombia have turned down the invitation to the event, scheduled to take place in Oslo on 10 December, the Nobel Peace Prize Committee said. At least 44 of the 65 embassies that have been invited have accepted the invitation, the committee claims, adding that the Chinese boycott campaign has been unprecedented.

China was infuriated when the committee awarded the prestigious prize to Liu, who is serving an 11-year prison sentence for subversion after co-authoring an appeal calling for reforms to China's one-party political system.

On Tuesday, China said most nations supported its call to boycott the ceremony, but host Norway insists that only a handful of envoys will not attend.

Of the 140 Chinese activists invited by Liu's wife only one has confirmed he will attend the ceremony in the Norwegian capital, according to organizers. Others have either been barred from leaving China or placed under tight surveillance in a crackdown on dissenters that followed the announcement of Liu's prize.
Nobel officials have also said that none of Liu's relatives were expected to travel to Oslo to collect the prize on his behalf. But his wife, Liu Xia, had invited scores of activists and luminaries to attend Friday's ceremony in an open letter posted online.

It is not unusual that a small number of countries do not attend the ceremony for various reasons. In 2008, when former Finnish President Martti Ahtisaari was awarded the prize, ten embassies did not attend.
suade diplomats from showing up.

Representatives of different embassies, including those of Egypt, Russia, Pakistan, Serbia, Iran, Venezuela, Cuba, Saudi Arabia, Kazakhstan, Ukraine and Colombia have turned down the invitation to the event, scheduled to take place in Oslo on 10 December, the Nobel Peace Prize Committee said. At least 44 of the 65 embassies that have been invited have accepted the invitation, the committee claims, adding that the Chinese boycott campaign has been unprecedented.

China was infuriated when the committee awarded the prestigious prize to Liu, who is serving an 11-year prison sentence for subversion after co-authoring an appeal calling for reforms to China's one-party political system.

On Tuesday, China said most nations supported its call to boycott the ceremony, but host Norway insists that only a handful of envoys will not attend.

Of the 140 Chinese activists invited by Liu's wife only one has confirmed he will attend the ceremony in the Norwegian capital, according to organizers. Others have either been barred from leaving China or placed under tight surveillance in a crackdown on dissenters that followed the announcement of Liu's prize.
Nobel officials have also said that none of Liu's relatives were expected to travel to Oslo to collect the prize on his behalf. But his wife, Liu Xia, had invited scores of activists and luminaries to attend Friday's ceremony in an open letter posted online.

It is not unusual that a small number of countries do not attend the ceremony for various reasons. In 2008, when former Finnish President Martti Ahtisaari was awarded the prize, ten embassies did not attend.

Egypt and 18 other countries will not attend the Nobel Peace Prize ceremony honoring Chinese dissident Liu Xiaobo, officials said in an announcement that followed a Chinese campaign to dissuade diplomats from showing up.

Representatives of different embassies, including those of Egypt, Russia, Pakistan, Serbia, Iran, Venezuela, Cuba, Saudi Arabia, Kazakhstan, Ukraine and Colombia have turned down the invitation to the event, scheduled to take place in Oslo on 10 December, the Nobel Peace Prize Committee said. At least 44 of the 65 embassies that have been invited have accepted the invitation, the committee claims, adding that the Chinese boycott campaign has been unprecedented.

China was infuriated when the committee awarded the prestigious prize to Liu, who is serving an 11-year prison sentence for subversion after co-authoring an appeal calling for reforms to China's one-party political system.

On Tuesday, China said most nations supported its call to boycott the ceremony, but host Norway insists that only a handful of envoys will not attend.

Of the 140 Chinese activists invited by Liu's wife only one has confirmed he will attend the ceremony in the Norwegian capital, according to organizers. Others have either been barred from leaving China or placed under tight surveillance in a crackdown on dissenters that followed the announcement of Liu's prize.
Nobel officials have also said that none of Liu's relatives were expected to travel to Oslo to collect the prize on his behalf. But his wife, Liu Xia, had invited scores of activists and luminaries to attend Friday's ceremony in an open letter posted online.

It is not unusual that a small number of countries do not attend the ceremony for various reasons. In 2008, when former Finnish President Martti Ahtisaari was awarded the prize, ten embassies did not attend.

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