• Germany's news in English

Merkel slams China for jailing dissident

AFP · 25 Dec 2009, 16:30

Published: 25 Dec 2009 16:30 GMT+01:00

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

"I regret that the Chinese government still heavily restricts freedom of expression and the press despite great progress in other areas," Merkel said in a short statement.

Liu, 53, was convicted in Beijing of "inciting subversion of state power" after he co-authored a pamphlet last year that called for human rights protection and the reform of China's one-party communist system.

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Your comments about this article

17:30 December 25, 2009 by pepsionice
Meanwhile.....silence from the White House. I would say that Merkel is now the leader of the free world.
17:31 December 25, 2009 by Wabit
Sadly the Chinese continue to demonstrate just how backward their country really is.

To lock up Liu Xiaobo for 11 years just for speaking his mind is positively barbaric!!!! The hatred of the people will eventually rise up and make China free for all to enjoy and live in harmoney.

Strange though that when one looks back and notes that this kind of heavy handed way of suppresing the people did not work even under the hand of Chairman Mao. So why does the current Government think it will work for them?
17:44 December 25, 2009 by wood artist
Wabit, unfortunately the answer to your question is a simple, single word: Fear!

The government lives in fear that providing freedom to the people will result in the government being held accountable for its actions. Just like we saw demonstrated in the old Soviet Union, the single party, Communist system is full of privilege and corruption. When the people have freedom, and the power of the ballot that might go with it, they will choose a different course, and those in power will be held to account. No one who has power wants to lose it, so it is easier to simply not allow such things.

Sad, but nonetheless true.

Nearly a billion people in revolt? That is a picture I would not want to see, yet it could easily happen.
21:07 December 25, 2009 by eddymanly
majority of their people do not give a sh*t to politics and human right. What they care more is about how to have a better life, buy a better car and a bigger house.

Why we care?
21:35 December 25, 2009 by Sacha Maurice
Pepsionice, I agree with you completely.

Angela Merkel took the reins of the Copenhagen conference (although the backwards thinking of the other G8 states stopped any form of concrete agreement) and she is now speaking out in defense of human rights and freedom of speech around the world. Although I am not a big fan of her domestic economic policies, her foreign policy (despite the catastrophe in Afghanistan) does confirm her position as one of the most powerful leaders in the western world. Here in Canada, we have a leader that is ridiculed on the world stage and cannot think for himself. We need an Angela Merkel. This is the main reason I am moving to Germany in 2 weeks, to get away from the conservative and puritan wave of politics that is taking over Canada.
22:48 December 25, 2009 by wxman
A billion people in revolt? Never happen. The Chinese Reds have this authoritarian thing down pat. They're real good at it. The sheep will do as their masters say.
04:54 December 26, 2009 by kaysera
Very timely and direct statement. Good leadership is to be appreciated by all and we appear to see it in the Merkel Government. Say what is good, say what is bad, maintain dialogue and business interests . If the elite think he makes 'mistakes', to employ that odious generalisation, they can say so just the same as anyone can in a free, humane, just World.
06:43 December 26, 2009 by freechoice
Only those who are being repressed and marginalized wants a fair government which only can be achieved through a democratic system. And I believed there are 700 millions of them. China is currently in a precarious position with much social injustice taking place now.

Materialism once you have it you will get sick of it someday, because of spiritual void. Then comes the need for faith and democratic ideals.
11:36 December 26, 2009 by Wabit
Hey Freechoice!!

Interesting posting and certainly food for thought. hmmmm.....
15:25 December 26, 2009 by mid503
That's rich coming from Merkel - the leader of a country that routinley imprisons people for stating 'unapproved' opinions about historical events.
19:14 December 26, 2009 by Henckel
@ pepsionice: That's right, no reaction from the White House. Why should there be? Barack Obama is as ardent a Marxist as the Chinese leadership. He has abdicated his role as "leader of the free world." Don't be surprised if he tries to engineer similar crackdowns in the USA!
21:57 December 26, 2009 by danyang
worse than the jailing, there are many Chinese spoke: why not shoot him?
16:35 December 27, 2009 by mixxim
Yet Germany and Austria will jail a man (Irving) who believes the holocaust has been exaggerated! The Chinkies must be laughing....
17:52 December 27, 2009 by pallkia
Wabit,in case you are not aware China is indeed a backward and poor country with 1300 million people to feed and keep order!

You are just like a rich family (US$46000 per capita income in Germany) with 2 children to feed lecturing another dirt poor family (merely US$3890 per capita income in China) with 32 children to feed how to run their family.

Why dont you go to this poor family and help them feed and clothe their children

This poor family is simply trying very hard to make his mostly uneducated kids educated and well fed.It is inevitable one or two kids will be punished for not staying united!

There are no authocratic society in the world's top ten advance countries and neither can you find a fully freedom countries in the lower rank of poor countries!You are simply lucky to be borned in the wealthy West!
Today's headlines
Student fined for spying on women via their webcams
Photo: DPA

Student from Munich fined €1,000 for spying on 32 different computers, using their webcams to take photographs, or record their keyboard history.

This is how much startup geeks earn in Germany
Photo: DPA

A comprehensive new survey of 143 startup founders shows how much you are likely to be earning at a German startup, from entry level all the way up to sitting on the board.

Man dies after beating for peeing near Freiburg church
The Johannes Church in Freiburg. Photo Jörgens Mi/Wikipedia

A middle-aged man from southern Germany has died after being attacked by a group of men who took umbrage with the fact he was urinating in the vicinity of a church.

The Local List
Seven German celebrities with uncanny doppelgängers
Former Berlin mayor Klaus Wowereit and actor Alec Baldwin. Photo: DPA; Gage Skidmore, Wikimedia Commons

Check out these seven look-a-likes of well known German figures - we admit that some are more tenuous than others...

Israel seeks to buy three new German submarines: report
A Dolphin class submarine. Photo: DPA

Israel is seeking to buy three more advanced submarines from Germany at a combined price of €1.2 billion, an Israeli newspaper reported Friday.

Here’s where people live the longest in Germany
Photo: DPA

Germans down south seem to know the secret to a long life.

More Germans identify as LGBT than in rest of Europe
Photo: DPA

The percentage of the German population which identifies as lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender is higher than anywhere else in Europe, according to a new study.

'Reichsbürger' pair attack police in Saxony-Anhalt
File photo: DPA.

A "Reichsbürger" and his wife attacked police officers on Thursday, just a day after another Reichsbürger fatally shot an officer in Bavaria.

Five things not to miss at the Frankfurt Book Fair
Photo: DPA

From consulting a book doctor to immersing yourself in an author's world with the help of virtual reality, here are five things not to miss at this week's Frankfurt Book Fair, the world's largest publishing event.

Parents who don't get nursery spot for kid entitled to pay
Photo: DPA

The Federal Court of Justice (BGH) ruled on Thursday that parents whose children don't receive placements in nursery care are entitled to compensation.

Sponsored Article
How to vote absentee from abroad in the US elections
10 things you never knew about socialist East Germany
Sponsored Article
Last chance to vote absentee in the US elections
How Germans fell in love with America's favourite squash
How I ditched London for Berlin and became a published author
Sponsored Article
How to vote absentee from abroad in the US elections
12 clever German idioms that'll make you sound like a pro
23 fascinating facts you never knew about Berlin
9 unmissable events to check out in Germany this October
10 things you never knew about German reunification
10 things you're sure to notice after an Oktoberfest visit
Germany's 10 most Instagram-able places
15 pics that prove Germany is absolutely enchanting in autumn
10 German films you have to watch before you die
6 things about Munich that’ll stay with you forever
10 pieces of German slang you'll never learn in class
Ouch! Naked swimmer hospitalized after angler hooks his penis
Six reasons why Berlin is now known as 'the failed city'
15 tell-tale signs you’ll never quite master German
7 American habits that make Germans very, very uncomfortable
Story of a fugitive cow who outwitted police for weeks before capture
Eleven famous Germans with surnames that'll make your sides split
The best ways to get a visa as an American in Germany
jobs available
Toytown Germany
Germany's English-speaking crowd