Congressmen Smith & Wolf Urge Obama to Call for Release of Nobel Laureate Liu Xiaobo

China Aid Association

(Washington, D.C. – Dec. 9, 2011) Two congressional leaders known for their championing of human rights worldwide have written to President Obama urging him to publicly press the Chinese government on the eve of International Human Rights Day to immediately and unconditionally release fellow Nobel Peace Prize laureate, the imprisoned Chinese dissident Liu Xiaobo, .

The Dec. 8 letter, made available on Friday, was written by Congressmen Chris Smith (R-N.J.) and Frank Wolf (R-Va.) and and was prompted by testimony presented at a hearing on Tuesday of the Congressional-Executive Committee on China on the human rights situation in China on the one-year anniversary of the awarding of the 2010 Peace Prize to Liu for co-authoring a manifesto, Charter 08, calling for political reform. Smith is co-chairman of the CECC, and both he and Wolf have long supported efforts to effect political change in China and been allies of China’s dissidents and human rights activists. International Human Rights Day is December 10.

(Chris Smith, left; Frank Wolf, right.)

“We are confident that the Chinese communist party, which has lost all moral integrity, will one day find itself on the ‘ash heap of history.’ The only question is whether the United States will be on the right side of history. Will we have found common cause with the Chinese people or their oppressors?” the letter asked.

ChinaAid founder and president Bob Fu was one of eight human rights experts and China scholars who testified at the Tuesday hearing, titled “One Year After the Nobel Peace Prize Award to Liu Xiaobo: Conditions for Political Prisoners and Prospects for Political Reform.”

In his remarks, Fu said, “In America, this great and free country, we have before us the shining examples of many great heroes: General George Washington, and, sitting on the other end of the Mall as though watching us, is President Lincoln; and there’s also black civil rights leader Martin Luther King as well as President Reagan, who faced up to the Soviet empire and never gave an inch nor ever considered doing so. The indomitable spirit and the commitment to freedom and human rights that they and many others who went before us held firm are like a bright torch shining throughout America’s history.”

The full text of Fu’s prepared remarks is available here:

To read Wolf and Smith’s letter, go to:

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Rachel Ritchie, English Media Director
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