The breaking news from China Saturday May 19, 2012 is that Chen and his family are to fly to the USA. The 40-year-old blind "dissident" has said that he is at Beijing airport. According to Chen passports have been issued and, along with his family, he will board a plane to the US soon.
Updates to follow
It is now mid afternoon in the UK and Chen is on his way to the US. He boarded a plane to Newark, near New York, along with his family. Chen who is a self taught lawyer has been offered a fellowship at the University of New York. This is good news for Chen, his wife and their two children. Chen has however said that he fears for other family members once he has left China.
Chen fought a long campaign against the Chinese authority's forced abortions, under China's one-child policy, The authorities will then in many ways be glad that he is leaving China. That will not be the case for the many people he has tried to help over the years.
According to the latest reports Chen applied to be allowed leave to study in the US following the usual procedure.