On October 11, four United Nations human rights experts welcomed the award of this year’s Nobel Peace Prize to Liu Xiaobo of China. Liu is a human rights advocate and former professor at Beijing Normal University who took part in the Tiananen Square demonstrations in 1989. He co-authored a book titled Charter 08 which advocates multi-party democracy.
A UN working group considered his arrest arbitrary and his eleven-year prison sentence, given in 2009, exceedingly harsh.
The award of the Nobel Peace Prize to Liu Xiaobo of China is a recognition of the growing international consensus for improving human rights practices and culture around the world.”—Statement issued by Mr. Ban’s spokesman.
Navi Pillay, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, said rights advocates like Mr. Liu can make an important contribution to China’s development. “We welcome this recognition of the very important role human rights defenders play in China, and in many other countries, as well as the challenges they face—also the courage they so often show,” she added.