BEIJING — The ailing widow of Liu Xiaobo, the Chinese democracy advocate and Nobel Peace Prize laureate who died of most cancers final yr below police guard, left China for Europe on Tuesday after a high-level diplomatic marketing campaign by the German authorities.
Diplomats mentioned Liu Xia, Mr. Liu’s widow, flew to Helsinki, Finland, on Finnair.
Ms. Liu’s brother, Liu Hui, posted a message quickly after the flight took off saying she had left for Europe “to start her new life.” He thanked all of the supporters who had helped win her launch.
Chancellor Angela Merkel of Germany raised Ms. Liu’s case instantly with China’s chief, Xi Jinping, throughout a go to to Beijing earlier this yr, a gesture that underscored her opposition to China’s therapy of Ms. Liu and her husband, European diplomats mentioned.
Ms. Liu, 57, had constantly requested to go away China because the dying of her husband final July, and had pleaded to be free of home arrest and strict police supervision.
Her launch by the Chinese authorities got here at some point after a human rights dialogue between European Union and Chinese officers in Beijing ended Monday. An annual summit assembly between China and the European Union is scheduled for subsequent week in Beijing.
Ms. Liu was positioned below police surveillance in 2010, the identical yr her husband was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for what the committee known as “his long and nonviolent struggle for fundamental rights in China.” He was not allowed to go to Oslo to receive the prize; Ms. Liu was additionally barred from attending the ceremony.
Mr. Liu, who was detained in 2008 after selling a pro-democracy constitution, died of liver cancer at age 61 whereas serving an 11-year jail sentence for “inciting subversion of state power.”
Though he was being handled at a Chinese hospital, the federal government didn’t reveal his sickness till it was in its late phases, and it would not allow Mr. Liu to travel abroad for medical care.
Ms. Liu has pals in Germany, and had requested the Chinese authorities to let her go there so she might obtain therapy for despair.
In a recorded telephone call launched in May by the Chinese dissident Liao Yiwu, who lives in exile in Germany, Ms. Liu mentioned: “It would be easier to die than to live. Nothing would be simpler for me than dying in defiance.”
European diplomats had mentioned during the last a number of months that China had left Ms. Liu in limbo as a present of resolve in opposition to Chinese human rights dissidents, regardless of aggressive efforts by Germany to press for her launch.
After Ms. Merkel’s go to to Beijing within the spring, the Chinese authorities let the Europeans know that if Ms. Liu’s case was not publicized, her launch can be attainable, a European diplomat with information of the case mentioned.
There was no fast response from the Foreign Ministry to a request for touch upon Ms. Liu’s departure.