Liu Xia, widow of Chinese Nobel Peace laureate leaves China

Liu Xia at her home in Beijing, 2012. Image: Ng Han Guan/Associated Press

DHARAMSALA, July 10: Liu Xia, the widow of Chinese dissident and Nobel Peace Prize winner Liu Xiaobo, has left China on a Finnair.

Liu Xia has left China for Europe on Tuesday after a high-level diplomatic campaign by the German government,” reports The New York Times.

Liu Xia, the ailing widow of Liu Xiaobo, flew to Helsinki, Finland, on Finnair, the report said. She is reportedly headed to Germany.

The 57-year-old poet and artist’s brother has confirmed that his sister is on a flight bound for Europe to start her new life in a message he posted online after the plane took off and thanked all the supporters who had helped win her release, the report said.

Citing European diplomats, the report said that the German Chancellor Angela Merkel has raised Ms Liu’s case directly with Chinese President Xi Jinping during her visit to China earlier this year where she took a stand against Beijing’s treatment of Ms Liu and her husband.

According to the report, since the death of her husband last year in police custody, she had consistently asked to leave China and had pleaded to be freed from house arrest and strict police supervision.

Liu Xia had been under house arrest for more than seven years since her late husband was awarded the Nobel Prize in 2010 while he was in a Chinese prison.

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