• Sun
  • Apr 20, 2014
  • Updated: 2:41am
NewsChina
HUMAN RIGHTS

Video: Dissidents beat Beijing security cordon to meet wife of jailed Liu Xiaobo

Video shows emotional meeting with dissident Liu Xiaobo's wife at Beijing flat where she is held

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 01 January, 2013, 12:00am
UPDATED : Tuesday, 01 January, 2013, 11:32am

Dramatic video footage emerged yesterday of several dissidents breaking through a security cordon to reach the wife of jailed Nobel laureate Liu Xiaobo, who is herself under house arrest.

The four-minute video, posted on YouTube, is shot in the apartment building in Beijing where Liu Xia is being held and represents a daring affront to the authorities.

It also illustrates the level of fear under which she lives, according to activists who say her detention is illegal.

A security official is shown asking leading dissident Hu Jia , who first came to prominence fighting for the rights of victims of an HIV scandal, and two other activists: "Who are you looking for?"

Told they want to see Liu Xia, who has been held under house arrest since her husband won the peace prize in October 2010, he replies firmly: "No, no, that's not possible."

"Who are you to tell us it's not possible?" comes the response, before the group push past him, forcing their way through to the staircase before climbing to her apartment.

It was the first time in more than two years that friends had been able to see Liu, who has not been charged with any offence.

She appeared emotionally shaken by the visit.

"You have to go, or they will come and bring trouble," she says at one point. Mostly she whispers in the ear of one of the activists so that the camera will not pick up her words.

In between sobs and smiles, the rights campaigners - including Hu and respected academics Xu Youyu and Hao Jian - agree to leave after a brief stay.

All three signed Charter 08, a bold petition for the protection of human rights issued in 2008.

Liu Xiaobo was arrested and sentenced to 11 years in prison for subversion after spearheading Charter 08.

"Let's be quick. We have to leave before they come up," says one, as pounding on the door signals the arrival of security guards.

The visit took place on Friday, Liu Xiaobo's birthday.

Hu said in a posting under the video that a fourth activist, Liu Di, was also present. She is not related to Liu Xia.

He added: "The thousands of words we wanted to say all turned into tears and choked cries."

He later said that after leaving the apartment the group were detained momentarily by the guards but eventually allowed to leave.

"Imagine people come to visit you after two years under illegal house arrest and all she feels is fear that the authorities will crack down further," he said.

Hu said in a posting under the video that a fourth activist, Liu Di, was also present. She is not related to Liu Xia.

He added: “The thousands of words we wanted to say all turned into tears and choked cries.”

He later told AFP that after leaving the apartment the group were detained momentarily by the guards but eventually allowed to leave.

“The video is all about fear and anxiety,” Hu said. “She has already lost a lot of hope. The authorities are making her fearful. What she is afraid of is her family will come under pressure.

“Imagine people come to visit you after two years under illegal house arrest and all she feels is fear that the authorities will crack down further.”

 

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