Escaped activist's fate hangs over Clinton China trip
An image grab taken from a video uploaded on YouTube on April 27, 2012 shows Chen Guangcheng speaking following his escape from house arrest in Beijing.
April 30th, 2012
03:22 PM ET

Escaped activist's fate hangs over Clinton China trip

By CNN Wire Staff

As Secretary of State Hillary Clinton prepared to depart Monday night for China, President Barack Obama was tight-lipped about the whereabouts of escaped Chinese activist Chen Guangcheng and his potential impact on the discussions to be held this week in Beijing.

"Obviously, I'm aware of the press reports on the situation in China, but I'm not going to make a statement on the issue," Obama said in response to a question about whether Chen was under U.S. protection and whether the United States would grant him asylum if he were to ask for it.

"What I would like to emphasize is that every time we meet with China, the issue of human rights comes up," Obama said during a joint news conference with Japan's Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda at the White House.

"It is our belief that not only is that the right thing to do, because it comports with our principles and our belief in freedom and human rights, but also because we actually think China will be strong as it opens up and liberalizes its own system."

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Filed under: China • Hillary Clinton
soundoff (6 Responses)
  1. Enter the Dragon

    He is a bad dude, with kung fu shaolin skills. From his jacket you can see he's got Nike sponsorship.

    April 30, 2012 at 7:38 pm | Reply
  2. quiet return

    a couple of people from china were caught spying in usa , and the trade will not be found in china. the guy will be returned quietly

    April 30, 2012 at 5:12 pm | Reply
  3. M Houston

    That "crafty blind dude" is probably less "blind" than anyone knows. And if the Chinese want him badly enough let 'em
    pay a "ransom" for him – like $16 x trillion.

    April 30, 2012 at 4:50 pm | Reply
  4. Catamount

    The United States' days of lecturing China on human rights are long gone. The US debt, sixteen trillion, exceeds our gross domestic product. That's like a dude who makes $30,000 a year owing his landlord $30,000 and lecturing him on how to raise his kids. As stated by former Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Mullen,"The most significant threat to our national security is our debt." When China tells us to pound sand and pay up, what recourse do we have? Borrow money from them to threaten the use of force? When you're as insolvent as the US, precious few options remain. We're like the hapless buffoon who gambled away his rent money in Vegas.

    BTW, that's a crafty blind dude to escape and evade his captors.

    April 30, 2012 at 4:13 pm | Reply

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