BEIJING - China said Thursday its relations with Norway had been affected by the Oslo-based Nobel Committee's decision to grant this year's Nobel Peace Prize to convicted Chinese criminal Liu Xiaobo.
"I think it is difficult to maintain China-Norway relations as well as they were in the past, because the Nobel Committee conferred the Nobel Peace Prize on a convicted Chinese criminal, and the Norwegian government publicly expressed its support for such a decision," said Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Jiang Yu.
"I deem it reasonable and understandable for some (Chinese) departments to cast doubt on normal bilateral exchange and cooperation with Norway," she said at a regular news briefing in Beijing.
Jiang said the Nobel Committee's decision is tantamount to overt support for criminal activities in China, which is "flagrant defiance" and "gross interference" in China's judicial system.
She urged the international community not to hold double standards with regard to the rule of law, since many other countries including the United States and Britain also have similar laws against subversion.
"The issue of Liu Xiaobo is not a matter of free speech and human rights. It is a matter of respecting other countries' judicial rights and how to view China's development path and social system," she added.
Liu, a Chinese citizen, was sentenced to 11 years in jail on December 25, 2009, after a Beijing court convicted him of violating Chinese law and engaging in activities designed to overthrow the government.