Hong Kong leader says she shares compassion over Liu Xiaobo's death

Hong Kong leader says she shares compassion over Liu Xiaobo's death

Chinese dissident artist Ai Weiwei says China's imprisonment of ailing Nobel Peace Prize laureate Liu Xiaobo is "a shame for the Chinese government and a shame for the global community".

Shortly after Liu's death, Beijing's propaganda machine was already predicting the world would soon forget the democracy advocate, who lost a battle with liver cancer on Thursday at the age of 61.

"It's a persecution, it's a violation of human rights", she said. Under de facto house arrest since his Nobel win, Liu Xia saw her communication with the outside world nearly completely cut by the government.

Two pictures were positioned prominently in the hearing room - one of Liu and the other of an empty chair with his Nobel Peace Prize placed where he would have been sitting if he had been allowed to attend the 2010 ceremony.

The Shenyang justice department released a video clip of Liu Xiaobo's treatment, emphasising that his family had a history of liver cancer and that family members were involved in the treatment process and informed of developments.

Liu looked out, but didn't see him.

In 1988, Liu received his doctorate in literature from Beijing Normal University, and he stayed on to work as a lecturer and literary critic. However, the paper defended China, stating that the country was focused on the treatment of Xiaobo's and some western forces were attempting to steer the issue in a political direction by hyping the treatment as a "human rights" issue.

In response to calls to allow Liu to leave China, the foreign ministry repeatedly said other countries should not interfere in China's internal affairs, using the same line on Thursday before his death was announced. "They used Liu's illness as a tool to boost their image and demonise China".US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson has also called release of Liu's widow from house arrest. He was moved from his cell to a guarded bed at the First Hospital of China Medical University, where he was barred from speaking out or going overseas for treatment.

A newspaper published by China's ruling Communist Party is dismissing late Nobel Peace Prize laureate Liu Xiaobo as a political pawn of the West whose legacy will fade.

Mr. Liu shot to official notoriety in 1989, when he sided with the student protesters who occupied Tiananmen Square to demand political liberalization.

For those who wonder if the world could've done more to help Liu in life, there is one final opportunity to celebrate his aspirations for freedom. The Chinese government reacted by briefly suspending trade with Norway. Ai Weiwei, the Chinese dissident artist now living in Berlin, told the BBC yesterday: "It still comes as a big shock. because he has been such a symbol for China's human rights or democratic movement".

The Foreign Ministry in Beijing, in an early morning statement Friday, says China made "all-out efforts" to treat Liu after he was diagnosed with liver cancer while in prison. It meant any time you picked up the phone and called the embassy and say, 'Where exactly do you find the embassy, ' they had to give the address and highlight the dissident.

United Nations spokesman Stephane Dujarric said Thursday that the United Nations chief sent his condolences to Liu's family and friends.

Even though the Norwegian Nobel Committee is independent of the government, Beijing froze diplomatic ties with Oslo as a result of Liu winning the peace prize.

"I'm saddened. It's a huge shock for me", Liu, who is not related to the laureate, said.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel said Liu Xiaobo was a "courageous fighter for civil rights and freedom of opinion".

Taiwan lawmaker Lee Chun-yi said many in Taiwan are horrified at the circumstances of Liu's death.

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