Nobel peace prize: Who is boycotting the ceremony?

A protester holds a candle near a portrait of Liu Xiaobo at a vigil in Hong Kong
Image caption Liu Xiaobo was jailed for 11 years in December 2009

This year's Nobel Peace Prize was awarded to Chinese political activist Liu Xiaobo. The move angered Beijing, which warned of "consequences" for governments attending the ceremony. The BBC's Paul Reynolds looks at which countries are not going, and why.

There are two major reasons why countries have decided to boycott Friday's Nobel ceremonies: first, that the prize went to a dissident and second, that the Chinese government has objected. This has opened the way for governments that are not sympathetic to dissidents to object and boycott the ceremony. The second reason - the threat from China of the "consequences" of attending - is significant because China is reaching out across the world with economic muscle.

At least 45 of the 65 embassies that have been invited have accepted the invitation, the Nobel Peace Prize Committee has said. But a total of 17 countries, plus China, have said they will not be going: Russia, Kazakhstan, Algeria, Tunisia, Saudi Arabia, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Iraq, Iran, Vietnam, Afghanistan, Venezuela, Egypt, Sudan, Cuba and Morocco. Their reasons are outlined below. Serbia had originally opted to boycott the ceremony but changed its mind and will now send its ombudsman.

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