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  • » 01/07/2011, 00.00

    CHINA – HONG KONG

    Liu Xiaobo unaware of Szeto Wah’s death



    The iconic figure of Hong Kong’s pro-democracy movement, who died on 2 January, had been invited to the Nobel Peace Prize presentation ceremony for the Chinese dissident. At present, no one can communicate with Liu and his family. His wife is unlawfully under house arrest.

    Beijing (AsiaNews/Agencies) – Nobel Peace Prize laureate Liu Xiaobo does not know that Szeto Wah, one of Hong Kong’s iconic pro-democracy figures, is dead. He had invited the late leader of the territory’s’ Democratic Party, who also organised the great vigils in remembrance of Tiananmen martyrs, to attend his Nobel Peace Prize presentation ceremony in Oslo on 10n December.

    Since Szeto’s death on 2 January, various human rights activists have tried to communicate the sad news to Xia Liu, wife of the co-author of Charter 08, which landed him 11 years in prison. However, she has been under house arrest in violation of Chinese law and no one has been able to contact her directly.

    Liu’s brother, Xiaoguang, said he would relay the news when they met next time. A Public Security Bureau official in Dalian told him a visit could be arranged for the middle of the month. Liu is currently serving his sentence at Jinzhou prison, Liaoning province.

    Szeto Wah was an outspoken campaigner for mainland activists. Wang Dan and Wuer Kaixi, two student leaders in the 1989 democracy movement now in exile in Taiwan, have expressed a desire to attend Szeto's funeral, which is scheduled for 29 January at Hong Kong’s St Andrew's Church.

    It is unclear whether the Hong Kong government will allow their entry, but about ten Civic Party members marched to the government headquarters yesterday, urging the administration to let them come.

    For the funeral ceremony, about 25 to 30 seats have been reserved for local government officials, but none for the central government's liaison office. Organisers have said however that they would consider including its officials if the office asked to attend.

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    See also

    22/01/2005 HONG KONG - CHINA
    15,000 attend vigil for Zhao Ziyang
    Many mainlanders also participated in the service. A group of party elders urge leaders to grant proper funeral honours to former leader who was ousted after Tiananmen.

    27/01/2011 HONG KONG – CHINA
    All set for Szeto Wah’s funeral in Hong Kong
    Tiananmen student protest leaders will not take part in tomorrow’s ceremony at St Andrew’s Baptist Church. It is unclear whether Hong Kong Chief Executive Donald Tsang will attend. Local media slam the government for denying dissidents a visa, an insult to Hong Kong.

    03/12/2010 CHINA
    Beijing’s paranoia over Liu Xiaobo
    A week before the award ceremony is to take place, Chinese authorities are still arresting dissidents and pro-democracy activists. The Communist government says it will be difficult to maintain “friendly relations” with Norway.

    12/10/2010 CHINA
    After the Nobel to Liu, a retrial is a possibility
    For Chinese authorities, some foreign powers are using the award as “to attack China”. Liu’s wife says that now he is better treated in prison—she is considering demanding a retrial.

    23/04/2013 CHINA
    Liu Xia shouts they are not free
    The wife of Nobel Peace Prize winner Liu Xiaobo leaves her house for the first time in two and a half years of illegal house arrest to attend her brother's fraud trial. She tells reporters who want to know whether her husband will be free that neither is free.



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