Statement by Minister of Foreign Affairs following death of Liu Xiaobo
July 13, 2017 - Ottawa, Ontario - Global Affairs Canada
The Honourable Chrystia Freeland, Minister of Foreign Affairs, today issued the following statement in response to the death of Liu Xiaobo:
“Today, the world mourns the death of Liu Xiaobo, a giant of humanity and a champion of human rights, whose message of hope and freedom will endure for generations to come. Mr. Liu was only the second Nobel Peace Prize winner to die while in custody.
“Mr. Liu dedicated his life to intellectual discovery, the pursuit of freedom and the protection of human rights in China. He was a passionate writer, speaker and campaigner for political and social change. Though he spent many years imprisoned for peacefully exercising his right to speak freely, was denied the opportunity to travel to receive his 2010 Nobel Peace Prize, and more recently, in his final days, was denied the medical treatment he requested, Mr. Liu remained a beacon of optimism.
“Mr. Liu believed in the human quest for freedom, the certainty of political progress and the importance of dispelling hatred with love.
“I offer my sincere condolences to the family and friends of Mr. Liu and to his many supporters around the world. In particular, my thoughts go to Mr. Liu’s wife, Liu Xia, herself a tremendous symbol of courage and poise, who remains under house arrest. We continue to call for the release of all political prisoners.
“Reflecting on those who gave their lives in pursuit of human rights, Mr. Liu selflessly declared that he would ‘forever be living with the guilt of a survivor and in awe of the souls of the dead.’ Today the world stands in awe of Mr. Liu, his example and his quest for a better world.”
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