Ismail Kadare, an Albanian writer based in France and the winner of the 2019 Pak Kyong-ni Prize, said Wednesday he was honored to be chosen for the literary award in Korea.
“I am very happy to accept this award. I am from Albania which is a country far from Korea, so receiving the award has grabbed much attention from the Albanian public too,” Kadare said during a news conference at the Press Center in Seoul.
For the controversy of Peter Handke, an Austrian Nobel Laureate, for his connection with Slobodan Milosevic, Kadare said he concurs with many other critics. Handke gave a eulogy at Milosevic’s funeral.
“I personally know Handke and had meals with him several times too. I think there is a line that literature should not cross but Handke did. Homicide should not be accepted under any circumstances,” he said.