The Confucius Peace Prize public relations trainwreck continues with the announcement of Russian prime minister (and soon-to-be president) Vladimir Putin as the winner of the 2nd annual Confucius Peace Prize. Known around the world for his dictatorial ways, forcible silencing of his critics, and for being the “Butcher of Chechnya”, the Russian beacon of peace (according to the judges anyway) beat seven other nominees — Gyaltsen Norbu (the “Chinese Panchen Lama”), Bill Gates, South African President Jacob Zuma, former UN chief Kofi Annan, Yuan Longping, a Chinese agricultural scientist known as the “father of hybrid rice”, German chancellor Angela Merkel, and Taiwanese politician James Soong (宋楚瑜) — to clinch the highly-uncoveted title.
This year’s award was hastily put together by a group of professors from Tsinghua University, Peking University and Beijing Normal University, after the Ministry of Culture disbanded and shut down the original organisers of the award, saying they had never been given official permission to run the awards. (UPDATE: Guess who’s behind the Confucius Peace Prize?)
Former Kuomintang chief Lien Chan of Taiwan was the winner of the inaugural award in 2010, but did not show up at the ceremony to pick up his award, saying he had only heard of the prize through the press and had not received any official invitation to attend the ceremony.
Let’s see if Vladimir Putin decides to accept this award.
UPDATE: Two Russian babes accept Confucius Peace Prize on behalf of Vladimir Putin
Previously on Shanghaiist
Shanzhai Confucius Peace Prize appears, original organisers not amused
Richard Burger on the Confucius Peace Prize
Ministry of Culture disbands organisers of Confucius Peace Prize
Confucius Peace Prize nominee James Soong wants to be President of Taiwan
Vladimir Putin and Chinese Panchen Lama nominated for Confucius Peace Prize
China’s Confucius Peace Prize: What is it really?