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As tributes rolled in after the death of Nobel Peace Prize laureate Liu Xiaobo, a newspaper published by the ruling Communist Party dismissed China's most famous political prisoner as a pawn of the West whose legacy will soon fade.

Beijing had ignored global calls for Liu to be allowed to seek treatment overseas after he was diagnosed with late-stage liver cancer in May, apparently fearing he would use his final days of freedom to denounce its authoritarian rule.

Liu died from multiple organ failure after being denied treatment overseas.

As tributes to China's Nobel Peace Prize laureate Liu Xiaobo flood global media, those in China are refraining from giving prominence to the influential dissident.

A Chinese foreign ministry spokesman on Friday said that awarding the Nobel peace prize to Liu "goes against the purposes of this award" and is "a blasphemy".

"Few knew Liu Xiaobo's thoughts in the last eight years, but she did and they talked during his last days", said Hu Jia, a leading Chinese human rights activist who has known Liu Xia for years and served prison terms for his own advocacy.

The text was read out on the stage when Liu was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize on December 10, 2010. One popular motif was a picture of an empty chair, echoing the way the Nobel Prize committee honored Mr. Liu at the 2010 ceremony.

Smith last month introduced a resolution calling on the Chinese government to grant unconditional release to both Xiaobo and his wife-Liu Xia.

China punished Norway by suspending political and economic ties - including salmon imports from Norway - until previous year, when Oslo promised to respect "China's core interests and major concerns". Some critics warned that the treatment of Mr. Liu has marred China's worldwide reputation and tarnished the legacy of President Xi Jinping, who has taken a hard line against dissidents.

Tsai had previously said Taiwan would be willing to aid in Liu's treatment.

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However, the Chinese government ignored the request, while the health of the Chinese activist rapidly worsened, leading to a multi-organ failure stemming from terminal liver cancer he had been diagnosed with.

Xiaobo, 61, who was regarded as a Gandhi-style dissident, was for decades involved in anti-government campaigns in China. "Instead, we talked more about things like books we love, such as the Japanese novelist Yasunari Kawabata", she said.

Critics say Liu's treatment was too little and too late and he should have been transferred out of the country for better prognosis.

The following year, Liu was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for "his long and non-violent struggle for fundamental human rights in China".

A pro-democracy activist mourns the death of Nobel Laureate Liu Xiaobo outside China's Liaison Office in Hong Kong on July 13.

As Liu Xiaobo remained behind bars until recently, Liu Xia, 56, had paid a heavy price for simply being his wife.

Beijing detained Liu in 2008 for his role in writing the manifesto and a year later sentenced him to 11 years in prison for "subversion".

U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, in a statement issued after Liu Xiaobo's death on Thursday, appealed for his widow's release. "They aren't really interested in prolonging Liu's life". "We call on relevant countries to respect China's judicial sovereignty and not to meddle in China's domestic affairs with this individual case".

"Even if he could live longer, he would never have achieved his political goals that are in opposition to the path of history". Liu reportedly had an opportunity early on to leave China, but he made a decision to stay behind and continue the fight for his vision of a free and democratic China.

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