Beijing tells Ber­lin to butt out of dis­si­dent is­sue

The Star Early Edition - - WORLD -

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

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