Nobel widow Liu Xia leaves China after 8 years' house arrest


Nobel widow Liu Xia leaves China after 8 years' house arrest

Friends of Liu Xia, the wife of Chinese Nobel Peace Prize victor Liu Xiaobo who died in detention last July, say she has boarded a flight to Germany after years of being detained.

He was first imprisoned in connection with the violently quashed 1989 Tiananmen Square pro-democracy protests and won the Nobel Peace Prize in 2010 for his writings during his final 11-year-sentence.

Liu Xia, 57, landed at in Berlin's Tegel airport at around 1700 local time. They were the first images of... China's deteriorating rights record is also being felt beyond its borders as it seeks to undermine global human rights institutions.

"We understand her condition has been aggravated by the restrictions placed on her movements, and contact with outsiders, for over seven years, while she has not been accused of any criminal activity, nor charged with any criminal offence".

Despite a diagnosis of late stage liver cancer and calls from the global community to release him for urgent medical treatment, Liu Xiaobo died at the age of 61 while still imprisoned on July 13, 2017. She has discussed Liu Xia's case with Chinese officials. "Until [her brother] is able to leave China to be reunited with his sister, Liu Xia will remain a hostage of the Chinese government".

Days after the Nobel Committee awarded Liu Xiaobo the Peace prize; Chinese authorities put Liu Xia also under house arrest. "But we still fear for Liu Hui, who is being kept in the country as a guarantee so that Liu Xia does not speak out overseas". While in prison, Liu Xiaobo was diagnosed with advanced liver cancer.

The U.S. State Department said it welcomed the news that Chinese authorities "allowed her to leave China as she long wished", but said it remains concerned about her brother and hopes he can join her in Germany.

"It is a tremendous relief that Liu Xia has been able to leave China for freedom overseas", Richardson said in a statement on the HRW website.

Hua said she "could not see any link" between Liu Xia's departure and the high-level Chinese visit.

On a rainy night in the summer of 2012, Hu stood outside Liu's apartment and aimed a laser pointer at the window of her study.

"I want to marry that enemy of the state!" she said shortly before the pair Wednesday in 1996 during Liu Xiaobo's stay at a labour camp, according to a biography of the dissident by Yu Jie.

Liu Xia, the widow of Chinese Nobel Peace Prize laureate Liu Xiaobo has arrived in Germany following being freed from house arrest after eight years.

But he said the authorities still control the fate of Liu Hui, which will likely act as a restraint on what she can do or say in Germany.

But for nearly a year that wish has remained out of reach, as she has remained under house arrest in her residential compound in Beijing, where friends said she was losing her will to live. Liu Hui was prosecuted in 2013 on questionable fraud charges, though later released on bail. Liu Xia chose Xiaobo.

The Chinese-language report said Liu Xia was aboard a Finnair flight that departed from Beijing at 11 a.m. (0300 GMT).

The news of her release was a rare piece of good news for China's beleaguered community of activists, who have been at the centre of an expansive crackdown on civil society, rights lawyers and other independent groups the administration of President Xi Jinping has deemed a threat to the ruling Communist Party's grip on power.

Western diplomats reportedly tried to visit Mrs Liu at her Beijing flat in May but were refused entry.

Those who signed the statement included: Bernard Duhaime, chair-rapporteur of the U.N. Working Group on Enforced or Involuntary Disappearances; Seong-Phil Hong, chair-rapporteur of the U.N. Working Group on Arbitrary Detention; and Michel Forst, the special rapporteur on the situation of human rights defenders. "It would be easier to die than to live".