China's state media on Wednesday again rounded on the Nobel committee, calling their decision to honour jailed dissident Liu Xiaobo "sheer bravado" and saying it created "tremendous chaos" in the world. Beijing has for the past two months sharply criticised the Oslo-based committee's decision to give the peace prize to Liu, who was jailed in December 2009 for 11 years on subversion charges.
China has ramped up that criticism ahead of Friday's award ceremony honouring Liu. On Tuesday, the foreign ministry called committee members "clowns" and said most of the world backed Beijing's opposition to the prize.
"This year's Nobel Peace Prize has created tremendous chaos around the world," the Global Times, the nationalistic sister publication of the Communist Party mouthpiece People's Daily, said in a commentary.
Of the committee's choice of Liu as peace laureate it said: "Such a decision was sheer bravado, displaying its ignorance and denial toward a big country that has made remarkable economic progress."
"The Nobel prize committee may lose the respect of the Chinese people once and for all," it added.
On Tuesday, foreign ministry spokeswoman Jiang Yu said "more than 100 countries and international organisations" had "expressed explicit support of China's position opposing this year's Nobel peace prize".
According to the Nobel Institute, 44 embassies have accepted invitations to Friday's award event while 19 have refused "for various reasons" and two have not replied.
Besides China, the countries who will not attend are: Afghanistan, Colombia, Cuba, Egypt, Iran, Iraq, Kazakhstan, Morocco, Pakistan, the Philippines, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Serbia, Sudan, Tunisia, Ukraine, Venezuela and Vietnam.