Famed Chinese pro-democracy advocate dies

A woman holds a candle as she attends a vigil for terminally-ill Nobel laureate Liu Xiaobo (pictured on banner) in Hong Kong on June 29, 2017. Liu wants Chinese authorities to let him get treatment abroad, friends say, as officials said his cancer has spread throughout his body. The Nobel Peace Prize winner, who was sentenced to 11 years in prison in 2009 for "subversion" after calling for democratic reforms, was released on medical parole after being diagnosed with terminal liver cancer last month, his lawyer said this week. / AFP PHOTO / Anthony WALLACE (Photo credit should read ANTHONY WALLACE/AFP/Getty Images)

Liu Xiaobo, a Nobel Peace Prize-winning Chinese dissident, has died, local authorities said in a statement Thursday. He was 61.

Liu spent more than a decade behind bars in China for his advocacy of democracy, including taking part in the 1989 Tiananmen Square protests.

He was granted medical parole in June after being diagnosed with liver cancer in prison. The Beijing government refused to let him seek treatment overseas, despite Liu’s wishes and international pressure.