Günter Nooke, Federal Government Commissioner for Human Rights Policy and Humanitarian Aid at the Federal Foreign Office, issued the following statement on the decision to uphold the conviction of Chinese dissident Liu Xiaobo:
”The decision to uphold the prison sentence is without a doubt a political verdict. I call for the immediate release of Liu Xiaobo. With this verdict, the Chinese Government has unfortunately demonstrated yet again that it is not willing to honour the commitment it made to respect fundamental human rights. This is not only a missed opportunity for China, it also shows just how much the communist leadership fears its own people.“
Liu Xiaobo was arrested on 8 December 2008 and charged with being a co-author of the so-called Charter 08. The German Government has − like the EU − protested against his detention on repeated occasions. On 25 December 2009 Beijing’s First Intermediate People’s Court sentenced the Chinese civil rights activist to an eleven-year prison term for attempted subversion to state authority. Today this verdict was upheld by the appeal court.