OSLO (Reuters) - Relatives of Liu Xiaobo, the jailed Chinese dissident and 2010 Nobel Peace Prize laureate, are unlikely to travel from China to collect the award next month, the Norwegian Nobel Committee was quoted as saying on Wednesday.
Committee secretary Geir Lundestad said that, if no close family member can come to the ceremony, the committee would temporarily retain the prize, consisting of a medal, diploma and 10 million Swedish crowns ($1.44 million).
“It looks like the family of Liu Xiaobo has given up believing that anyone in the prize winner’s family will be able to travel from China and be present in Oslo on December 10,” Lundestad told the website of Norwegian broadcaster NRK.
He said the ceremony, a massive gala in Oslo City Hall, would take place as scheduled, but without the award presentation.
Liu Xiaobo has expressed the hope that Chinese authorities would permit his wife, Liu Xia, to accept the award on his behalf in Oslo, NRK said.
But on a new list of desired guests provided to the Nobel committee by Liu Xiaobo’s representatives, no family members were named, Lundestad said. “The family of course has a standing invitation,” he told NRK.
Lundestad was not immediately available for comment when contacted by Reuters.
Reporting by Oslo newsroom; editing by Tim Pearce