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Berit Reiss-Andersen, chairwoman of Nobel Peace Prize committee, said her visa to China to attend Liu's funeral had been rejected amid speculation that Beijing was trying to avoid a publicity around Liu's funeral. Detained for nearly a decade on the charge of "inciting subversion of state power", Liu, not allowed to receive medical attention for his liver cancer available only overseas, died, under guard, in a Chinese hospital.

China has rejected global criticism for not allowing Mr Liu, who had been serving an 11-year prison term for "subversion", to be treated overseas.

He died in custody on Thursday, aged 61, after being denied permission to leave the country for treatment for late-stage liver cancer.

"Liu lived in an era when China witnessed the most rapid growth in recent history, but he attempted to confront Chinese mainstream society under Western support", it said.

Photo Some users posted images of Tiananmen Square in Beijing, site of the 1989 protests in which Mr. Liu participated. Up to that point, I was a member of the first class to enter university when college entrance examinations were reinstated following the Cultural Revolution (Class of "77)".

In 1988, Liu received his doctorate in literature from Beijing Normal University, and he stayed on to work as a lecturer and literary critic. "And he took on just about everybody else, and made fun of them and debunked them".

Liu's illness elicited a deluge of sympathy from friends, Chinese rights activists and global groups, who saw him as a fearless advocate of peaceful democratic change. "He perceptively discovered and criticized traces of the Communist Party's education and brainwashing in them", he says.

Norway got a hard lesson about the dangers of rewarding political activists when China halted salmon imports from the Nordic country after the Oslo-based Nobel Committee awarded the 2010 Nobel Peace Prize to Liu-a veteran of the 1989 Tiananmen Square protests- while he was behind bars. "The blame for this should lie squarely on the Chinese government and for his death they alone should be held accountable", Smith said at a hearing Friday before a panel of human rights advocates. Liu and his fellow hunger-strikers, fearing a bloodbath in the square, acted as negotiators between military forces and the remaining demonstrators. The scene was captured in a 1995 documentary, The Gate of Heavenly Peace, by filmmakers Richard Gordon and Carma Hinton. "It would be a tragic failure". At dawn on June 4, the group successfully persuaded the students to leave.

The final one started in 2009.

Liu was jailed for 11 years in 2009 after he helped write a petition calling for sweeping political reforms.

Chinese intellectuals had been pointing this out for years. China, one must remember these days, is not the only "rich nation".

"That item of ending one-party dictatorship stuck in their craw, I believe", he says.

Liu was representative of "ideas that resonate with millions of people all over the world, even in China". Norway's prime minister eluded questions about Liu while he was hospitalized and simply expressed "great sadness" after he died. He served three prison sentences in the 1990s, totalling nearly five years.

Before he was granted medical parole last month, Liu had been serving a 11-year prison sentence for "inciting subversion of state power". "It's a blasphemy of the peace prize", Geng said, referring to the Nobel Peace Prize awarded to Liu in 2010. Another empty chair was for Liu Xia.

Ottawa's reaction to Liu's death came as Canada's Governor General David Johnston is concluding a state visit to China on Friday, accompanied by a large delegation of Canadian politicians and business leaders.

Liu spent much of the last three decades in forced confinement - at home, at labour camps or in prison.

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