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    This file photo taken on December 10, 2010 shows Norwegian actress Liv Ullmann (L) reading Liu Xiaobo's text I have no enemies next to the The Nobel Peace Prize committee Chairman Thorbjoern Jagland (R) sitting next to an empty chair during the ceremony for the Nobel Peace Prize Laureate and Chinese dissident Liu Xiaobo (displayed at C) at the city hall in Oslo, on December 10, 2010

    Norway, China to Restore Ties After 2010 Row Over Nobel Prize for Liu Xiaobo

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    Oslo and Beijing decided to restore relations damaged by the 2010 Nobel Peace Prize being awarded to Chinese political prisoner Liu Xiaobo.

    MURMANSK (Sputnik) — Norway and China are determined to normalize bilateral relations, which deteriorated following the 2010 Nobel Peace Prize being awarded to Chinese political prisoner Liu Xiaobo, the Norwegian Foreign Ministry said Monday.

    "I am pleased that we are here today in Beijing and can declare the full normalization of our political and diplomatic relations with China. This provides for great opportunities for cooperation," the ministry said in statement, citing Foreign Minister Borge Brende.

    According to Brende, the sides decided to immediately resume negotiations on a free trade agreement. The two countries also agreed on the full normalization of the Norwegian exports to China, as well as the continuation of bilateral talks on a wide range of issues, particularly, the cooperation in the Arctic.

    In 2010, the Norwegian government appointed an independent committee to select the Nobel Peace Prize winner, which decided that Liu should be awarded the prize for the struggle for fundamental human rights. In China, Liu is a political prisoner, who was awarded his Nobel Peace Prize while in his fourth prison term. China has demanded an apology, but Norway responded by saying that the decision-making did not directly involve the Norwegian government.

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    Tags:
    Nobel Peace Prize, Liu Xiaobo, Borge Brende, China, Norway
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