Beijing tells Berlin to butt out of dissident issue
BEIJING: Beijing has called on Berlin to refrain from interfering in Chinese affairs under the pretext of the case of prominent dissident and Nobel laureate Liu Xiaobo, Foreign Ministry spokesperson Geng Shuang said yesterday.
On Monday, German government spokesperson Steffen Seibert said Liu’s case was closely watched in Germany, while Chancellor Angela Merkel called on Chinese authorities to show some “humanity” in this issue. In addition, its Embassy in China accused authorities of illicitly monitoring and recording a German doctor’s visit to Liu.
“We hope that corresponding countries will respect the legal sovereignty and would not interfere in China’s inner affairs under the pretext of specific cases,” Geng said.
Liu was tried for “inciting subversion of state power” in 2009, a year after publishing the Charter 08 manifesto, calling for overhauling democratic reforms in China. He was subsequently convicted and sentenced to 11 years in prison. In 2010, he was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize, triggering a massive diplomatic row between China and Norway. His prison term is expected to be completed by 2020.
In May, Liu was diagnosed with liver cancer and was allowed to receive specialist treatment in a hospital. Despite the calls on Beijing to allow him to be treated overseas, the Chinese authorities remained uncompromising, warning against foreign involvement. – Sputnik