The award of the Nobel Peace Prize to Liu Xiaobo of China is a recognition of the growing international consensus for improving human rights practices and culture around the world.

The Secretary-General has consistently emphasised the importance of human rights along with development and peace and security as the three main pillars of the work of the United Nations.

Over the past years, China has achieved remarkable economic advances, lifted millions out of poverty, broadened political participation and steadily joined the international mainstream in its adherence to recognized human rights instruments and practices.

The Secretary-General expresses his sincere hope that any differences on this decision will not detract from advancement of the human rights agenda globally or the high prestige and inspirational power of the Award.

New York, 8 October 2010