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Former Czech president Havel protests outside China embassy for Liu Xiaobo

Posted by Author on January 8, 2010

Author: ČTK, Czech Happenings, 06.01.2010 –

Prague – Former Czech president Havel, bishop Vaclav Maly and actor Pavel Landovsky tried to hand over an open letter of protest against the imprisonment of human rights activist Liu Xiaobo to the Chinese embassy in Prague today, but eventually they had to throw the letter in a letter-box.

The three former Czech dissidents called on the Chinese President and government not to repeat what happened in the past in former Czechoslovakia in which human rights activities were persecuted, Havel told journalists.

The Czech protesters chose a symbolical date to make their call.

“Today is the Epiphany festival [commemorating the three Magi visiting the baby Jesus at Bethlehem] and also exactly 33 years have passed since we issued the Charter 77 (human rights manifesto),” Havel said.

Liu Xiaobo, 54, a co-author of Charter 08 that drew inspiration from Charter 77, was sentenced to 11 years in prison for alleged subversion of the state last December.

He is a writer, honorary chairman of Chinese PEN-club and a university professor.

The European Union has denounced the Chinese court´s verdict and U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights Navi Pillay has expressed deep concern about it.

Maly visited China previously and met the families of the arrested dissidents. He said today he does not like it that no representative of the Chinese embassy reacted to the three former Czech dissidents´ ringing the bell today.

“It is very awkward, it shows that relations with China must be conditioned on discussion and dialogue on human rights,” Maly told journalists.

Havel said it is important to express solidarity with dissidents in countries that are not free……. (more details)

One Response to “Former Czech president Havel protests outside China embassy for Liu Xiaobo”

  1. Thank you for taking time to write such a easy to read article on this topic.

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