read all- When the police came for Liu Xiaobo on a December night nearly two years ago, they didn’t tell the dissident author why he was being taken away again. The line in the detention order for his “suspected crime” was left blank.
But Liu and the dozen officers who crowded into his dark Beijing apartment knew the reason. He was hours from releasing Charter 08, the China democracy movement’s most comprehensive call yet for peaceful reform. The document would be viewed by the ruling Communist Party as a direct challenge to its 60-year monopoly on political power.
Liu was sentenced last Christmas Day to 11 years in prison for subversion. The 54-year old literary critic is now a favorite to win the Nobel Peace Prize — in what would be a major embarrassment to the Chinese government.