Chinese Nobel Peace Prize laureate Liu Xiaobo dies

Posted July 14, 2017

In a statement, the hospital said that a suspicious mass was found on Liu's liver in a checkup on May 31, and he was diagnosed with late-stage liver cancer that had already metastasized throughout his body.

Liu had been suffering from liver cancer and died of multiple organ failure.

Liu, China's most famous political dissident, died during medical parole while serving a prison sentence for trying to overthrow the government.

"He was known then as a rebel, the black horse of the literary scene", says Perry Link, a China scholar at Princeton and the University of California, Riverside who has translated Liu's works into English.

Later in 2009, Liu was given an 11-year prison sentence for "inciting subversion of state power" after helping write Charter 08, which called for reform of China's one-party government and an emphasis on freedom of expression.

Albert Ho, who heads the Hong Kong Alliance organizing protests in Liu's support, said China's efforts to erase Liu from people's memory will fail.

Shortly after Liu was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize, his wife and fellow poet, Liu Xia, was placed under house arrest as a part of the Chinese government's crackdown on dissent.

China's Nobel laureate Liu Xiaobo died Thursday after a battle with cancer, remaining in custody until the end as officials ignored worldwide pleas to let him spend his final days free and overseas. When the troops opened fire on protesters on the night of June 3-4, 1989, he could have fled but stayed to negotiate with the Army and arrange a safe exit for students from the center of Tiananmen Square.

Chinese authorities refused Liu Xiaobo's dying request to be allowed to travel overseas for treatment.

Germany had offered to treat Liu as recently as Wednesday, calling for a "signal of humanity" from China. Waiting just before his death, Geremie R. Barme, an Australian Sinologist and a close friend of Liu said, "Xiaobo was wedded both psychically and physically to China and its fate". He said, "Liu's ideas and his dreams will persist, spread, and will, one day, come to fruition..."

Beijing and Oslo relations were normalised last December. He was represented with an empty chair during the prize ceremony as he was not allowed to travel to receive it. He's the first Nobel laureate to die under guard since pacifist and Nazism critic Carl von Ossietzky's death in Germany in 1938.

Worldwide human rights groups, Western governments and local activists had urged authorities to free Liu and grant his final wish to be treated overseas.

A member of the Australian Tibetan community holds a placard during a candlelight vigil for the Chinese Nobel Peace Prize-winning dissident Liu Xiaobo outside the Chinese consulate in Sydney on July 12, 2017. Time and again they tried to silence him, and time and again they failed. We had hoped that the Chinese. they mistreated him in prison, contributed to his illness, we would hope that they would allow him to leave the country to receive medical care", she said, "They did not.

Extending heartfelt condolences and deepest respects to his wife, Liu Xia, his family and friends, Mr. Zeid said Mr. and Mrs. Liu were a courageous couple and absolutely devoted to one another.