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Chinese author barred from going to Germany festival, hauled from plane

Posted by Author on March 1, 2010

DPA, Via The Earthtimes, Mar. 01, 2010-

Beijing – China police on Monday removed banned writer and government critic Liao Yiwu from a plane and took him into custody, preventing him from travelling to Germany for a literary festival, a friend said. Officers hauled Liao, who had a German visa, from the plane in the south-western city of Chengdu shortly before it was to take off for Beijing, from where he was to catch a flight to Germany, the friend, whose identity is not being released to protect her, said in a telephone interview.

“His passport and visa were in order,” said the friend, whom Liao phoned as he was being taken to an airport security office. Since then, she has been unable to contact him, she said.

“I contacted the police at the airport but was unable to find out anything,” she said, adding that shortly before his departure, Liao had met with a high-ranking German diplomat.

Liao, 50, who had also been barred from leaving China to attend the Frankfurt Book Fair this past autumn, had planned to take part in Festival lit.Cologne on March 19.

Liao’s book The Corpse Walker: Real Life Stories: China From the Bottom Up was published in the West last year after being banned in China. He wrote it from interviews with toilet cleaners, prostitutes, older monks, political prisoners and street artists.

The writer was imprisoned for four years beginning in 1990 after he published the poem Massacre in 1989 about the bloody crackdown that year on pro-democracy demonstrations, which were centred in Beijing’s Tiananmen Square.

Since then, Liao has been on a black list and not allowed to publish in China.

The EarthTimes

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