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Fang Lizhi, who inspired Chinese dissidents, dies

April 8, 2012 • Business


FILE – This June 4, 1999 file photo shows University of Arizona Physics Professor Fang Lizhi at the University of Arizona in Tucson, Ariz. Fang, one of China’s best-known dissidents whose speeches inspired student protesters throughout the 1980s, died Friday, April 6, 2012 in the United States, where he fled after China’s 1989 military crackdown on the pro-democracy movement. He was 76. (AP Photo/The Arizona Daily Star, James S. Wood)

BEIJING (AP) — Fang Lizhi, one of China’s best-known dissidents whose speeches inspired student protesters throughout the 1980s, has died in the United States, where he fled after China’s 1989 military crackdown on the pro-democracy movement. He was 76.

Once China’s leading astrophysicist, Fang and his wife hid in the U.S. Embassy for 13 months after the crackdown. In exile, he was a physics professor at the University of Arizona in Tucson.

Fang’s wife, Li Shuxian, confirmed to The Associated Press in Beijing that Fang died Friday morning in Tucson.

Fang inspired a generation, said his friend and fellow U.S.-based exiled dissident Wang Dan, who announced the death on Login to read more

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