CATHOLIC NEWS OF THE WEEK . Saturday, 18 November 2017

Print Version    Email to Friend
Health of Liu Xiaobo deliberately neglected former top aide says

BEIJING (SE): Bao Tong, the former top aide to the late ousted Chinese premier, Zhao Ziyang, has hit out at the Communist Party for its tardiness in granting medical parole to jailed Nobel laureate and democracy advocate, Liu Xiaobo (Sunday Examiner, July 2). 
 
The one time top cadre, who served a seven-year jail term in the aftermath of the 1989 Tiananmen Square Massacre, accused the party of neglect for waiting until Liu’s liver cancer, which was diagnosed in May, was at a late, inoperable stage, saying the timing is deliberate.
 
“How could they not know about it in the initial stages, (or) in the later stages, until it reached the terminal stage?” Bao asked. “The government is responsible for this.” 
 
Radio Free Asia quoted him as saying, “This has revealed to us the reality of the Chinese prison system.”
 
Bao, who has lived under continual surveillance and periods of house arrest since his release from prison, said the authorities should be held accountable for not diagnosing the co-signatory of the Charter 08 manifesto sooner.
 
“The progress of liver cancer from the initial stages to coma is not a short one,” he said, adding, “It takes a number of years and the authorities would have kept this from the prisoner for all that time. I think this was done deliberately.”
 
Bao went on to say, “Some people have been talking about deliberate homicide and I think that is a very frank way of putting it.”
 
He added, “I talked about this with a few friends after we heard the news and we thought that we should call on the president (Xi Jinping) to implement an amnesty, because (Liu) was sentenced back in 2009 under our previous leadership.”
 
Bao concluded, “I think the current leadership should give him a break.”

More from this section