12/16/2017, 16.12
CHINA

Liu Xiaobo’s wife sends letter abroad whilst police in Shenzhen cover up a mural

Paul Wang

In a letter in poem form, Liu Xia, wife of the great dissident, says she is "going crazy" after years living in isolation without the possibility of meeting anyone. In Shenzhen, the work of a Chinese-French artist focuses on Liu Xiaobo’s imprisonment and Nobel Prize. The author and his wife are currently in custody.

Hong Kong (AsiaNews) – The death of Liu Xiaobo, the Chinese dissident who won the 2010 Nobel Peace Prize, is still an open wound for his wife Liu Xia, but also for the police.

A few days ago, the friends of the late dissident – who was left to die from cancer in prison – expressed concerns about her after she was able to send a letter abroad.

To this day, Liu Xia (picture 1) remains under close watch, and is unable to see and meet her friends.

In a letter written in the form of a poem addressed to the 2009 Nobel Prize for Literature, Herta Müller, Liu recounts her state of depression by saying she is "going crazy".

In one passage, she writes: "I am too lonely, / I do not have the right to speak / speak loudly. / My life is similar to that of a plant / I am lying like a corpse."

The letter was published on 9 December by one of Liu’s friends, the intellectual and dissident Liao Yiwu, who now lives in exile in Germany.

Meanwhile, a Chinese-French artist, Hu Jianmin, managed to exhibit a mural that refers to Liu Xiaobo at the Shenzhen-Hong Kong Biennale of Urbanism Architecture which opened yesterday (picture 2).

An empty blue chair (symbolising Liu’s empty chair at the Nobel Prize ceremony) and a row of red iron bars (symbolising a prison) amid an idyllic traditional Chinese landscape were among the images Hu Jiamin painted at the centre of a triptych mural.

The artwork remained on display for only one day. Late last night, plainclothes policemen covered it with a promotional banner and took Hu and his wife Marine Brossard to the police station.

The authorities opened an investigation into the case as if there were "political problems" with it. The fate of the artist and his wife remains unknown.

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