Vladimir Putin Gets China’s Confucius Peace Prize

21 November, 2011 at 13:35 | Posted in China, human rights | Leave a comment
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By John An
Epoch Times Staff

An unlikely prize—the Confucius Peace Prize—has been awarded to an unlikelier candidate: Vladimir Putin.

The prime minister of Russia, invader of Georgia, and protector of Iranian theocrats was awarded a peace prize by a committee that had previously been set up, and then disbanded, by the Chinese Communist Party’s Ministry of Culture.

The selection was announced at a news conference in Beijing on Nov. 13.

One of the organizers, poet Qiaocheng Dharma, commented to Radio France Internationale that the reason Putin won the award was his opposition to NATO’s bombing of Libya this spring.

NATO forces stepped in on the side of a people-powered uprising to overthrow the dictator Moammar Gadhafi, who had ruled the country with an iron fist for decades.

Some analysts have suggested that another message was also being sent: that invading and subduing adjacent minority regions is worthy

Zhao Pei, a commentator with New Tang Dynasty Television, thought giving a peace award to Putin was rather ironic. In 1999 Putin annexed the Republic of Chechnya, in the process killing 25,000 to 50,000 Chechen people, mostly civilians; and Putin’s government is known for its active suppression of journalists and dissidents. “Putin himself has been a controversial figure on the issue of human rights,” Zhao says.

The Confucius Peace Prize was originally set up by the Ministry of Culture to challenge the awarding of the Nobel Peace Prize to Liu Xiaobo, an imprisoned Chinese dissident. The committee was later officially disbanded, but was apparently resurrected this year in unofficial garb.

The winner of the first Confucius Peace prize was Lien Chan, the honorary chairman of Taiwan’s Nationalist Party. Observers thought it partly a political stunt to strengthen the idea of “uniting” Taiwan with the communist-controlled mainland.

When Lien finally did not attend the ceremony to claim the award, the organizers gave 100,000 yuan (US$15,760) in cash to an unidentified young woman, apparently on his behalf. Lien declined to comment.

Zhang Ming, a political science professor at Renmin University of China, told Deutsche Welle that theme of the award echoes Party-propaganda that attempts to revive Confucius, and link the sage to modern China and the Chinese communist regime.

“This activity involves a lot of entangled interests and business manipulation,” he said. “If you look at what the award was aiming at when it was first aired, you will agree that it is a political farce now.”

The show will go on, with a ceremony scheduled in Beijing on Dec. 9

via Vladimir Putin Gets China’s Confucius Peace Prize | Society | China | Epoch Times

Related Articles: The Chinese Media’s Selective Reporting

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