Exiled Chinese writer Liao Yiwu: Ukraine fights for Taiwan and democracy – World – ABC Color

Alfredo Valenzuela Seville (Spain), Jun 13 (EFE).- Liao Yiwu is considered to be the most persecuted Chinese writer for having written the poem “Massacre” about the Tiananmen massacre (1989), which earned him five years in prison. and of torture. After this period he fled from China and went into exile in Germany and when reviewing it, he told Efe: “Ukraine is helping us, Taiwan, the whole world.”

His prison experience was collected in “For a song, a hundred songs”, a memorial document that reflects the cruelty of the Chinese prison system and the arbitrariness of justice in that country, “God is red” is also published in Spain, about the survival of Christianity in China despite its persecution, and “The Corpse Walker”, a collection of reports and interviews with people from China’s marginal environments.

QUESTION.- How has your life changed since you fled China?

ANSWER.- In the first month of my flight from China I published the German version of “For a song, a hundred songs”, which had a huge success. More than 20,000 copies were sold. I won the Scholl Brothers and Sisters Award and the top award at the Frankfurt Book Fair, the German Peace Prize. This was something I did not expect. I became a public figure in the German-speaking world. I gave a speech in St. Paul’s Church, entitled “This empire must be divided”, attended by the German president and ministers, and the 2009 Nobel Prize winner for Literature, Herta Müller, whom I hugged and burst into tears. .. And suddenly, that low-class Chinese salesman, Liao Yiwu, was so far away from me.

Q.-Do you think you will be able to return to China one day?

A.- If China is divided into dozens of countries, I will return to my hometown, Sichuan. In Chinese history, Sichuan has always been the first region to rebel against centralized power.

Q.-Do you regret having written your poem “Massacre”?

R.- I do not regret it at all. Although the judge told me in court, “Liao Yiwu, if you had been caught reciting ‘Massacre’ on the night of June 4, you would be dead and I would not have tried you here.”

Q.- The Russian poet Mandelstam lost his life for a poem…

A.- I understand. When I think about what happened to him it makes me want to cry. My luck is better than yours.

Q.- How do you explain the understanding and even the support of so many European intellectuals for the communist dictatorships?

A.- Quite simply, they have not been in jail, they have not seen how they took their friends, their relatives, their husbands or their wives, with the idea that maybe they will return home, or maybe they will never return. . They have not experienced the assassinations that the world simply cannot see, such as that of Nobel Peace Prize winner Liu Xiaobo, for which we mobilized all the forces of the international media and human rights organizations, including the Government of (Angela) Merkel but, in the end, the dictatorship assassinated him in the most brutal way possible.

Q.- Do you trust the strength of Western democracy?

A.- I have been exiled in the West for eleven years and I have a large number of readers and followers who always write to encourage me. My German publisher also insists on publishing my books, and my new book “Wu Han” is my tenth. This gives me strength. The Ukrainian resistance to the aggression of dictator Vladimir Putin has also given me strength. Ukraine is helping us, Taiwan, the whole world… It gives me confidence that Ukraine is fighting a war for Western democracy.

Q.- The vicissitudes of your book “For a song, a hundred songs” has been compared with that experienced by the manuscript of “Doctor Zhivago” by Boris Pasternak. Do you share that comparison?

A.- That analogy is from my friend (the Nobel Prize for Literature) Herta Müller, and I must say that I have inherited the spiritual tradition of “Doctor Zhivago”.

Q.- Why don’t the Chinese concentration camps offend Western public opinion?

A.- This is only temporary. As long as the works of writers like me are translated, disseminated and commented on, the truth about the Chinese concentration camps will surely attract the attention of the West.

Q.- What is the worst memory of prison?

A.- Two suicides.

Q.- Does literature serve to overcome the consequences of torture?

A.- It is useful to remember it, to write about it.

We want to thank the writer of this short article for this remarkable material

Exiled Chinese writer Liao Yiwu: Ukraine fights for Taiwan and democracy – World – ABC Color