“Serious Crimes”

A Chinese academic who helped write a document advocating political liberalization has been sentenced to 11 years in jail.

"A Chinese court has sentenced a leading dissident to 11 years in prison for ‘inciting subversion of state power.’ Liu Xiaobo, a 53-year-old academic, who was previously jailed over the 1989 Tiananmen Square protests, had been charged for co-authoring a document appealing for political liberalization. The verdict was handed down by a Beijing court on Friday after a two-hour trial on Wednesday in which prosecutors accused Liu of ‘serious crimes’. Liu's lawyer, Shang Baojun, said he had 10 days to appeal, but Liu's wife, Liu Xia, had said on Wednesday that her husband had no plans to appeal. Friday's sentencing came despite calls by the US and EU for Liu's release. ‘We are deeply concerned by the sentence of 11 years in prison announced today,’ Gregory May, the US embassy's first secretary in China, told reporters outside the courthouse."

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