By Tenzin Monlam
Video clips showing Liu Xiaobo receiving treatment, left, and praising his care in prison. The clips’ release seemed aimed at blunting suggestions that China had allowed him to grow gravely ill. Photo-AP
DHARAMSHALA, June 30: The Tibetan spiritual leader His Holiness the Dalai Lama has expressed his joy over the release of fellow Nobel Peace Laureate and renowned Chinese rights activist Liu Xiaobo from prison on medical parole, adding that the news of his illness saddened him.
“I was filled with joy to hear that fellow Nobel Peace Laureate Liu Xiaobo had been released from prison, and then filled with sadness to learn that he is in such poor health,” the Tibetan spiritual leader said in his letter dated June 28.
The 61-year-old activist was sentenced to 11 years’ imprisonment in 2009 for ‘inciting subversion of state power’ following his involvement in drafting a petition known as ‘Charter 08’, which calls for political reforms in China.
The Dalai Lama, in his letter, said, “I hope that Liu Xiaobo will now be provided with the best medical treatment available and offer prayers that it will be a success.”
Liu is out on medical parole to receive treatment for terminal cancer and according to his lawyer as of Monday, he is being treated at a hospital in Shenyang of Liaoning Province.
“I was personally moved as well as encouraged when hundreds of Chinese intellectuals and concerned citizens, inspired by Liu Xiaobo, signed Charter 08 calling for democracy, freedom and rule of law in China,” he said while recalling how many request he gets from people requesting to pray for his well-being.
Many International human rights NGOs and notable world politicians have urged the Chinese government to let him have the best medical care in China or abroad. However, Chinese authorities yesterday have refused to permit him from traveling abroad to receive treatment.