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"As long as human rights are violated, there can be no foundation for peace. How can peace grow where speaking the truth is itself a crime?"

Nobel cause: Gere duels dragon over Liu Xiaobo

December 17, 2010

THE TIMES OF INDIA
Dec 12, 2010

KATHMANDU: Hollywood icon and a staunch supporter of the Dalai Lama, Richard Gere has taken up cudgels on behalf of Liu Xiaobo, the Chinese rights activist who was awarded the Nobel Prize for Peace this year but whose government has slammed him with an 11-year prison sentence.

On Friday, when the Nobel awarding ceremony at Oslo went on without the presence of Liu, Gere, who chairs International Campaign for Tibet , the NGO advocating human rights in China-controlled Tibet, joined 10 other groups in New York to honour the jailed activist, Human Rights in China said.

At an event in the Ralph Bunche Park across from the UN, Gere, speaking about what Liu's writings and the man himself stands for, said, "It's clear that, in the end, brute force can never really stop that innate universal drive for happiness , for freedom, for expression , for community. And this Nobel Peace Prize for Liu Xiaobo demonstrates that we are part of that community."

The actor, who has visited Nepal several times to meet with Tibetan leaders and refugees, also read excerpts from Liu's trial statement, "I have no enemies: my final statement" that went on to say he looked forward "to the advent of a future free China for there is no force that can put an end to the human quest for freedom... "
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