News / Asia

Supporters of Liu Xiaobo Under Surveillance in China

Policemen patrol outside the apartment complex where jailed Nobel peace laureate Liu Xiaobo's wife lives in Beijing, 10 Dec 2010
Policemen patrol outside the apartment complex where jailed Nobel peace laureate Liu Xiaobo's wife lives in Beijing, 10 Dec 2010

The Nobel Committee is due to hold a ceremony Friday in the Norwegian capital, Oslo, to honor jailed Chinese dissident Liu Xiaobo, the recipient of this year's Nobel Peace prize.  At the same time, authorities in China are keeping Liu's supporters in China under close surveillance.  

Chinese authorities visibly stepped-up security in front of the compound where Nobel Laureate Liu Xiaobo's wife, Liu Xia, has been under house arrest since he was awarded the prestigious peace prize in October.

Guards checked the identities of all who entered.  Police cars were positioned on every surrounding corner and security agents patrolled the compound on foot.

Chinese authorities have also been closely guarding Liu's supporters, keeping them under house arrest or tight surveillance.

On Friday, lawyer Pu Zhiqiang said security agents showed up to monitor him a day earlier, and even accompanied him on a business trip outside of Beijing.

Pu says the agents are following him because of the Nobel ceremony, which he called "pretty scary" - not because he's afraid, but because he thinks the government is.  Pu says this time, the security agents told him they would stop following him on Saturday.

Others, such as journalist Li Datong, have faced restrictions on traveling overseas.

Li says he thinks he will not be allowed to travel abroad until the end of January.

At briefings this week, Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Jiang Yu was asked about the Chinese government's various restrictions on Liu's supporters, or why his wife is under house arrest even though she has committed no crime.

Although these types of questions have been asked repeatedly, Jiang has refused to give a direct answer.

Jiang says reporters should ask what she calls the "competent authorities."  She also cast doubt on the accuracy of reports of house arrest or other harassment.

The Nobel Committee awarded Liu Xiaobo the Peace Prize for what it said was his "long and non-violent struggle for fundamental human rights in China."  Liu is a longtime activist writer, who helped organize Charter 08, a manifesto calling for freedom of speech and political reform in China.  He disappeared into detention two years ago.  Last year, he was sentenced to 11-years in jail for subversion.  

Chinese officials stress that legal authorities found Liu to have broken the law.  Therefore, they say, awarding the Nobel prize to a Chinese criminal is an insult to China and an interference in the country's internal affairs.

The Nobel ceremony will go ahead, but the award itself will not be presented because Chinese authorities are preventing Liu's family members from attending the ceremony.

And inside China, there has been a noticeable campaign to block outside information about Liu Xiaobo and the Nobel ceremony - either by way of the Internet or through international TV news channels.

You May Like

African States Push to Keep Boko Haram Offline

Central African telecoms ministers working with Nigeria to block all videos posted by Boko Haram in effort to blunt Nigerian militant group's propaganda More

Falling Oil Prices, Internet-Savvy Youth Pose Challenge for Gulf Monarchies

Across the Gulf, younger generations are putting a strain on traditional politics More

Philippines Call Center Workers Face Challenges

Country has world’s largest business process outsourcing, or BPO, industry, employing some one-million workers More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
US Supreme Court Hears Hijab Discrimination Casei
X
Katherine Gypson
February 25, 2015 11:30 PM
The U.S. Supreme Court has heard opening arguments in a workplace religious discrimination case that examines whether a clothing store can refuse to hire a young woman for wearing the headscarf she says is a symbol of her Muslim faith. Katherine Gypson reports from the Supreme Court.
Video

Video US Supreme Court Hears Hijab Discrimination Case

The U.S. Supreme Court has heard opening arguments in a workplace religious discrimination case that examines whether a clothing store can refuse to hire a young woman for wearing the headscarf she says is a symbol of her Muslim faith. Katherine Gypson reports from the Supreme Court.
Video

Video Falling Gas Prices Hurt Nascent Illinois Hydraulic Fracturing Industry

Falling oil prices are helping consumers purchase cheaper petroleum at the pump. But that’s made hydraulic fracturing or “fracking” less economically viable for the companies in the United States invested in the process. VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports on one Midwestern town that was hoping to change its fortunes by cashing in on the next big U.S. oil boom.
Video

Video Fighting in Sudan's South Kordofan Fuels Mass Displacement

Heavy fighting in Sudan's South Kordofan state is causing hundreds of thousands to flee into uncertain conditions. Local aid organizations estimate as many as 400,000 civilians have been internally displaced since the conflict began more than three years ago, while another 250,000 have fled across the border to refugee camps in South Sudan. VOA's Adam Bailes reports.
Video

Video Lao Dam Project Runs Into Opposition

A Lao dam project on a section of the Mekong River is drawing opposition from local fishermen, international environmental groups and neighboring countries. VOA's Say Mony visited the region to investigate the concerns. Colin Lovett narrates.
Video

Video A Filmmaker Discovers Her Biracial Identity in "Little White Lie

Lacey Schwartz grew up in an upper middle-class Jewish family, in a town in upstate New York where almost everyone she knew was white. She assumed that she was, as well. Her recent documentary, Little White Lie, tells the story of how she uncovered the secret of her true racial background. VOA’s Carolyn Weaver has more on the film.
Video

Video Deep Under Antarctic Ice Sheet, Life!

With the end of summer in the Southern hemisphere, the Antarctic research season is over. Scientists from Northern Illinois University are back in their laboratory after a 3-month expedition on the Ross Ice Shelf, the world’s largest floating ice sheet. As VOA’s Rosanne Skirble reports, they hope to find clues to explain the dynamics of the rapidly melting ice and its impact on sea level rise.
Video

Video US-Cuba Normalization Talks Resume Friday

Negotiations aimed at normalizing diplomatic relations between the U.S. and Cuba resume Friday. On the table: lifting a half-century trade embargo and easing banking and travel restrictions. There's opposition in Congress, but some analysts say there may be sufficient political and economic incentives in both nations for a potential breakthrough this year. VOA's Mil Arcega reports.
Video

Video Pakistan's Deadline For SIM Registration Has Cellphone Users Scrambling

Pakistani cell phone users have until midnight Thursday to register their SIM cards, or their service will be cut off. While some privacy experts worry about government intrusion, many Pakistanis are just worried about keeping their phone lines open. VOA Deewa reporter Arshad Muhmand has more from Peshawar.
Video

Video Myanmar Warns Factory Workers to End Strikes

Outside Myanmar's main city Yangon, thousands of workers walked off their jobs earlier this month demanding a doubling of their wages, pay raises after a year and input from labor unions on industrial regulations. Since Friday, the standoff has grown more tense as police moved in to disrupt the sit-ins, resulting in clashes that injured people from both sides. VOA correspondent Steve Herman visited industrial zones which have become a focus of Myanmar's fledgling workers rights movement.
Video

Video Oscar Winners Do More Than Thank the Academy

The Academy Awards presentation is Hollywood’s night to reward the best movies from the previous year. It’s typically a lot of glitter, a lot of thank you’s, a lot of speeches. But many of this year’s speeches carried messages beyond the thank you's. VOA’s Carolyn Presutti takes a look.

All About America

Circumventing Censorship

An Internet Primer for Healthy Web Habits

As surveillance and censoring technologies advance, so, too, do new tools for your computer or mobile device that help protect your privacy and break through Internet censorship.
More