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Canada raises Nobel dissident Liu's case with China

Canadian Foreign Minister Lawrence Cannon raised the case of jailed Nobel Peace laureate Liu Xiaobo with his Chinese counterpart during talks in Beijing on Friday, his office said.

world Updated: Oct 22, 2010 15:20 IST

Canadian Foreign Minister Lawrence Cannon raised the case of jailed Nobel Peace laureate Liu Xiaobo with his Chinese counterpart during talks in Beijing on Friday, his office said.

Cannon met with Chinese Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi in Beijing just a day after US Attorney General Eric Holder said he also raised the issue, as China continued to face pressure over Liu's imprisonment.

"We have raised Mr. Liu's case with the Chinese government in the past and continue to do so -- as I did with my counterpart today," Cannon said in a statement provided to AFP. The statement gave no other details about what was discussed.

Liu, 54, was jailed in December for 11 years on subversion charges after co-authoring Charter 08, a bold manifesto calling for political reform in one-party Communist-ruled China.

The writer was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize on October 8 -- enraging Beijing, which has branded Liu a "criminal" and said the award is tantamount to "encouraging crime".

Holder told reporters on Thursday that he raised the issue in talks with top Chinese officials this week, saying China and the United States were in "fundamental disagreement" over Liu's case.

Beijing has faced calls from around the world -- including the United States, Canada and the European Union -- to free Liu, who has peacefully advocated political reform of China's one-party system for decades.

China has reacted angrily, putting Liu's wife Liu Xia under house arrest after his win. Activists say several of his supporters also have either received official warnings or been taken into police custody.