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An Appeal to Chinese Government to Release Liu Xiaobo and Liu Xia—Global Signature Campaign

December 4, 2012

Attachment 1

Announcement of a December 8, 2012 press conference and seminar in Flushing, New York City, organized by “Friends of Liu Xiaobo,” to launch a global campaign to obtain the release of Liu Xiaobo and his wife, Liu Xia.

Attachment 2

A letter of support for the campaign from Ding Zilin, a representative of the Tiananmen Mothers


An Appeal to Chinese Government to Release Liu Xiaobo and Liu Xia (Chinese Original)

(Please send press inquiries to freelxbnyc@gmail.com; Michael Lee +1-732-986-8848)
 

On December 8, 2008, the Chinese government secretly arrested Liu Xiaobo, a well-known writer and human rights activist.  A year later, on December 25, 2009, Liu Xiaobo was sentenced to 11 years in prison for what the government called "inciting subversion of state power.”

It was the fourth time he was imprisoned for his writings and pro-democratic activities in China.

In recognition for his “long and non-violent struggle for fundamental human rights” in his country, the Norwegian Nobel Committee awarded Liu Xiaobo the Nobel Peace Prize in 2010. However, this tremendous honor has done nothing to change Liu Xiaobo's situation. As of now, he has been deprived of his freedom for four years.  His wife, Liu Xia, who has been unlawfully subjected to house arrest for more than two years, with two female police officers monitoring her around the clock.

The situation of Liu Xiaobo and Liu Xia further illustrates China's deteriorating human rights situation. Autocratic countries such as the Nazi Germany, the Soviet Union, the Communist Poland, South Africa under apartheid and Myanmar under the military junta have all used various means to persecute their native Nobel laureates. China’s tyranny has gone even further by extending its persecution to a family member, a blatant trampling of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. The Chinese government's actions threaten the peace and stability of the world, and erode the universal values of democracy and freedom.

A supporter of the 1989 Tiananmen pro-democracy movement and an independent intellectual involved in China's human rights struggle for more than 20 years, Liu Xiaobo has become a symbol and a leading figure in China's democratization process, and he must not be allowed to fall into obscurity from the world.  He should receive the same attention and support from the world and from his compatriots as his fellow Nobel Laureates Nelson Mandela, Vaclav Havel, Kim Dae-Jung and Aung San Suu Kyi.

Therefore, we call on the Chinese government to immediately and unconditionally release Liu Xiaobo and Liu Xia, and to allow them to freely engage in political, cultural and artistic endeavors to which they are entitled as citizens.

We call on all the people of China, Chinese living abroad and concerned citizens of all countries, as well as all governments, international organizations, human rights organizations and the international media to  join in our effort to rescue Liu Xiaobo and Liu Xia.

We make a special appeal to the European Union, as winner of the 2012 Nobel Peace Prize, urging them to pressure the Chinese government to release Liu Xiaobo and Liu Xia at the Nobel Prize presentation ceremony.

We make a special appeal to the winner of the 2012 Nobel Prize for Literature, Chinese author Mo Yan, urging him to call for the release of Liu Xiaobo and Liu Xia at his Nobel Prize presentation ceremony.

Finally, we make a special appeal to Nobel Peace laureates US President Barack Obama, former US President Jimmy Carter and former US Vice-President Al Gore, as well as all other Nobel laureates, to help us obtain the release of Liu Xiaobo and Liu Xia.

With this petition, we officially launch the global signature campaign for the release of Liu Xiaobo.


Attachment 1

Press Conference and Seminar to Kick Off Global Campaign to Obtain the Release of Liu Xiaobo (Chinese Original)

(Please send press inquiries to freelxbnyc@gmail.com; Michael Lee +1-732-986-8848)

 

On the second anniversary of Liu Xiaobo winning the Nobel Peace Prize and the fourth year of his incarceration by the Chinese government, “Friends of Liu Xiaobo” has organized a press conference and a seminar to kick off a global campaign to obtain the release of Liu Xiaobo and his wife, Liu Xia.

When:  1:00 pm to 2:30 pm, December 8, 2012 - press conference

2:30 pm to 5:00 pm, December 8, 2012 - seminar

Where:   136-31 41Ave., #PH, Flushing, NY11354

What:  Briefings on a new global campaign to free Liu Xiabo

Unveiling the campaign poster

Broadcasting a video speech by a fellow Nobel Laureate, the Dalai Lama

Presenting a letter by Professor Ding Zilin, founder of the Tiananmen Mothers

The seminar will feature discussions by Chinese scholars on Liu Xiaobo’s ideas in promoting democracy in China.

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Attachment 2

Letter from Ding Zilin In Support of Free LXB! Campaign (Chinese Original)

(Please send press inquiries to freelxbnyc@gmail.com; Michael Lee +1-732-986-8848)

 

Dear Friends:

I am delighted to learn that on December 10 – the anniversary of Liu Xiaobo receiving the Nobel Peace Prize – you will be launching the Free LXB! campaign in New York. As a member of the Tiananmen Mothers, I am much moved; it gives me a ray of hope in the midst of utter despair and helplessness. I thank you for inviting me to speak at this event and giving me an opportunity to pour out the feelings bottled up in my heart regarding Xiaobo's arrest and the Nobel.  Xiaobo is a tragic figure who has experienced many ups and downs over the last two decades. Likewise, the relationship between Xiaobo and myself has passed through many stages, from that of teacher and student to that of two people united by hardship and becoming closer than blood relatives. In between there were times in which we became estranged and even cut off communication with each other, but eventually our hearts led us back to mutual understanding and trust. In his words, "As long as I face those departed spirits with sincerity, and bare my heart to their parents, we will certainly move forward together." For more than ten years now, he has kept his promise. I've been recalling my dealings with Xiaobo in the days since Yu Jie telephoned me and asked me to give this speech. That night, my husband dreamed that Xiaobo telephoned and said he was coming to visit us in Wuxi, and he awoke with tears streaming down his face. The 18th Party Congress has concluded now, and no matter what the future holds, we must call on the current leadership to "Free Liu Xiaobo!" A rescue campaign for Liu Xiaobo is long overdue. As long as we to take up the cause wholeheartedly and to work together tirelessly, over time it will act like water dripping on stone, and have genuine hope of success. Two years before Xiaobo won the Nobel, he was secretly detained after issuing Charter 08, so he has been deprived of his freedom for four years now. For most people, four years may not seem very long; the time can pass in a flash. But for someone like Xiaobo, so full of vitality and spirit, who lives for his writing and packs three days of activity into every two days, to be imprisoned and deprived of his freedom of expression and movement must be a source of inconceivable pain and suffering. Xiaobo advocates the peaceful and rational promotion of gradual reform. Rather than pursuing political power to achieve this goal, he has devoted himself to building a humane society where life can be lived in dignity. He upholds liberal values, pursues principles of tolerance and advocates dialog among all concerned, inside or outside of the system; whether in a top-down or bottom-up process, there should be mutual respect of everyone’s right to voice their views. He believes that in this way a popular consensus will ultimately be reached on a transformation process that will exact the least cost from all concerned. In his treatment of others, Xiaobo has repeatedly shown the greatest possible conciliation, never forcing his will on others. No matter how difficult his tasks, he has never pushed the work onto others but personally sees it through to the end. That's why his influence has continued to grow, and he has attracted a following of devotees of democracy and freedom that has made him a leader of the democracy movement within China. The success of the Charter 08 signature campaign is the result of his influence and outstanding effort, and that is why the Communist authorities became so terrified that they have kept him in prison for four years. They then placed his wife, Liu Xia, under illegal house arrest and prohibited her contact with others, which has effectively severed Xiaobo’s communication with the outside world. Liu Xia is a lawful Chinese citizen, and the Chinese government’s trampling of law and humanity creates a precedent for the persecution of family members of political prisoners following the Cultural Revolution. After Xiaobo was secretly detained at the end of 2008, the CCP government maintained a watchful eye on reactions in China and abroad, especially in the United States, waiting half a year before declaring Xiaobo's formal arrest in June 2009. Friends in China and abroad then began campaigning for his release. The governments and parliaments of European countries such as Germany, the Czech Republic and Sweden, and prominent individuals such as Nobel laureates the Dalai Lama and Vaclav Havel, the president of the European Union, Poland's former Prime Minister, and prominent Polish dissident Adam Michnik have all called on the Chinese government to release Liu Xiaobo. I have personally contacted European embassies in Beijing asking them to help Liu Xiaobo, and I wrote a letter to US President Barack Obama asking him to exert influence on the Chinese government. Yet none of these efforts has produced results. Liu Xiaobo has said, "I have no enemies," yet the authorities treat him as an irredeemable foe. The CCP government’s imprisonment of Liu Xiaobo as an individual has stifled China's democratic cause as a whole. The state of China's democracy movement since Xiaobo’s arrest shows that rescuing Liu Xiaobo is the salvation of China's democratic cause.At long last, Xiaobo's loyal friends have come forward with a new rescue campaign, and the launch of this campaign in New York has special significance.

America has turned its eyes back on Asia. Now that Nobel Laureate Obama has been re-elected as US President, I hope with all my heart that he will exert some effort on behalf of his fellow laureate, Liu Xiaobo. On October 8, 2010, when Xiaobo won the Nobel Prize, the Tiananmen Mothers entrusted me with defying Domestic Security restrictions to immediately issue a congratulatory statement. In an ensuing conflict with Domestic Security police in Wuxi, I suffered a concussion and loss of memory, after which we were kept under house arrest for 74 days. I will always remember this incident, because we are friends of Xiaobo.Thank you again for this opportunity.

Ding Zilin

November 2012

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