• Fri
  • Nov 28, 2014
  • Updated: 7:12am

Dissident 'killed himself'

PUBLISHED : Saturday, 14 July, 2012, 12:00am
UPDATED : Saturday, 14 July, 2012, 12:00am

A second investigation by mainland police in Hunan into the mysterious death of June 4 dissident Li Wangyang says he committed suicide.

Li, who was nearly deaf and blind and could hardly walk, was found hanged in his hospital room, in the city of Shaoyang on June 6.

He had spent more than 22 years in jail after taking part in the Tiananmen Square protests in 1989.

Li, who had been released from jail about a year ago, died only days after he vowed to keep fighting for universal suffrage.

His death sparked a public outcry and mass protests involving tens of thousands of people in Hong Kong.

On Thursday, the provincial police authorities issued a report of more than 10,000 words explaining how Li hanged himself with his feet still on the ground.

The agency also reported that Li's younger sister, Li Wangling, and her husband, Zhao Baozhu, had accepted the verdict on Wednesday.

It released a handwritten note, allegedly signed by Li Wangling more than a month ago, saying her brother's case had been settled and they did not want to contact the outside world. This is an apparent response to their disappearance after protesting about Li's death.

Li Xiaokui, Shaoyang's police chief, confirmed a verdict of suicide. 'The result [of the provincial inquiry] is out and Li was found to have ... committed suicide,' he said.

The report said Li tore a strip from his bed sheet, which he used to hang himself from the window while his roommate was asleep.

In Hong Kong, activists and a medical expert questioned the report's findings, saying it failed to dispel concerns that Li was killed. But a spokesman for the Hong Kong government declined to comment.

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