‘It’s easier to die’: Liu Xiaobo’s widow voices desperation

Liu Xia
The Associated Press

BEIJING (AP) — A close friend of the late Chinese Nobel Peace laureate Liu Xiaobo has released a recording of an emotional phone call with his widow.

Liu Xia has never been charged with a crime, but has been kept guarded and largely isolated since her late husband was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for his human rights activism in 2010. He was still serving a prison sentence for “subversion” when he died last summer.

The exiled writer Liao Yiwu says in an essay published Wednesday that Liu told him in a recent phone call that she has given up hope of being able to leave China and feels it is “easier to die than live.”

Liao also says Chinese authorities repeatedly told Liu that she would soon be able to leave.