Liu Xiabo, the founder of the Charter 08 campaign was jailed for 11 years yesterday on Christmas day, for "subversion" in calling for greater democracy in China.
"Liu Xiaobo's case is about agreed international human rights standards, not merely the internal affairs of China," said John Ralston Saul, the president of International PEN. "China is signatory to international treaties and conventions, and cannot be given a free pass when it acts against its own and international standards."
Chinese human rights activist Liu Xiaobo sentenced to 11 years in jail | World news | guardian.co.uk
Liu's most famous words are probably: "we should end the practice of viewing words as crimes".
The contemporary artist Ai Weiwei was among those at the courtroom. "This does not mean a meteor has fallen. This is the discovery of a star."
Recently in Hong Kong the memoirs of Zhao Ziyang were published that called for free elections, and the separation of the judiciary from the Communist Party and the executive. For such grave thoughtcrimes, as well as undue sympathy to the students in Tiananmen Square and an opposition to the martial law that was unleashed against them on June 4th 1989, Zhao, a former General Secretary of the Chinese Communist Party and premier of the people's Republic of China, spent his last ten years under house arrest.
But all this hides a great fear on behalf of nationalist hardliners and those in government with a corrupt self interest in China's economic boom. The Chinese Communist Party is inpenetrable, but harsh sentences like this do not take place unless there is a large faction within the ruling elite which favours Liu and the legacy of Zhao Ziyang.
These words are banned in mainland China.Originally Posted by Zhao Ziyang
Sun Yat Sen's are not:
Surely a form of liberal democracy, with Confucian Chinese characteristics, will emerge in China? This instinctive fear of freedom cannot go on for ever.Originally Posted by Sun Yat Sen