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May 10, 2012

Blind activist worried about family

Blind Chinese activist Chen Guangcheng revealed concerns for his family's safety, after escaping house arrest. (UPI)

BEIJING (UPI) -- Blind Chinese activist Chen Guangcheng said Wednesday he is worried about the safety of his family in the aftermath of his escape from house arrest.

Chen told Radio France International from his Beijing hospital bed that his nephew is currently in custody and his brother has received threats.

"I'm really worried about them," he said. "All I know about my family is that my nephew is under detention and my older brother has received a lot of threats but doesn't dare talk."

He said Chinese authorities have promised him he can apply to study in the United States but he doesn't know how soon that will happen.

Chen was placed under house arrest in 2010 after spending four years in jail for protesting forced sterilizations and abortions in China.

He escaped on April 22 and took refuge at the U.S. Embassy before being hospitalized.

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