China faces backlash after Liu's death

Saturday, 15 Jul, 2017

China rebuffs calls from supporters and foreign governments for him to be allowed to seek treatment overseas.

As he lay in a heavily guarded hospital ward, Beijing declined offers by Germany, the United States and Taiwan to host him, citing his deteriorating condition and denouncing the proposals as interference in China's internal affairs.

Critics pointed to the harsh treatment, including severe torture, of other activists to show the Chinese prison system is far less "humane" than Liu described it.

Close friends said they were anxious for her well-being, with reports that she had already lost both parents in the previous year and had suffered from depression and a heart condition.

Zeid said Liu "devoted his life to defending and promoting human rights, peacefully and consistently", and "was the definition of civic courage and human dignity - a poet and intellectual who wanted, and strove for, a better future for his country".

"Now that he is gone the world will never know", lamented Yang Jianli, who participated in the demonstrations for democracy in Tiananmen Square and also served five years in prison in China.

His last was for co-authoring Charter 08, a document circulated in 2008 which called for more freedom of expression, human rights and an independent judiciary. Was Xi so afraid of what Liu might have said beyond the reach of Chinese censors?

Responding to such calls early Friday, foreign ministry spokesman Geng Shuang chastised foreign officials for "making improper comments on Liu Xiaobo's death of illness".

World leaders hailed Chinese Nobel peace laureate Liu Xiaobo as a courageous fighter for human rights after his death on Thursday following a battle with cancer.

In 2010, Liu received the Nobel Peace Prize for his activism in favour of democracy in China.

"When Mr. Liu Xiaobo died, he was not in any pain at that moment, he was very much at peace, because all of his relatives said their goodbyes beforehand".

Liu Xiaobo was a celebrated activist in other parts of the world and a dissident in China. "These ideas can not be imprisoned and will never die".

People place flowers and light candles in front a picture of late Nobel Peace Laureate Liu Xiaobo outside the Nobel Peace Center in Oslo, Norway, on Thursday.

"We now have to come to terms with the fact that his chair will forever remain empty", Reiss-Andersen said. It was a fearless fight that Liu fought.

Tributes quickly poured in for Liu. It is unclear whether Jagland's tweet was a reaction to the Chinese statement. "We are here, with Xiaobo".

"This crime - the death and silencing of Liu Xiaobo - should follow the Chinese Communist Party like an unwashable permanent stain", Smith told the hearing, adding that governments and rights groups should work to preserve Liu's legacy.

It said Liu's family has refused the tracheostomy. The assembly marked a turning-point for Liu, who arrived at Tiananmen in May and began protesting alongside the movement's young leaders.

Liu's death on July 13 has now returned his wife's fate back to the fore, with foreign officials calling for Beijing to release her from house arrest and let her leave the country as she wishes.

China's Nobel Peace Prize-winning dissident Liu Xiaobo died of liver cancer while in custody.

Former Amnesty International Norway leader Petter Eide claimed that Prime Minister Erna Solberg reacted with relief when informed of the death of Nobel Peace Prize victor Liu Xiaobo in China.

"One-party dictatorships can't allow free speech. Instead, we talked more about things like books we love, such as the Japanese novelist Yasunari Kawabata", she said. "RIP", German Justice Minister Heiko Maas wrote on Twitter. "His violent-free resistance made him a hero in the fight for democracy and human rights".

Even the most obscure homages to Liu on Weibo were removed. In his brief, government-sanctioned role as a popular writer and academic, he was known for his criticism of traditional Chinese culture and for urging his fellow literati to exhibit more individualism.