Chen Guangcheng, the blind Chinese dissident who fled house arrest last month in a dramatic escape from security forces, left the American Embassy in Beijing on Wednesday after securing assurances from the Chinese government that he would remain safe, American officials said in the first account of his diplomatically tense six-day stay there.
The officials described details of the negotiations between both governments and Mr. Chen as well as a telephone call to the dissident from Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton after he left the embassy compound for treatment at a medical facility here.
Mrs. Clinton said in a statement that she was “pleased that we were able to facilitate Chen Guangcheng’s stay and departure from the U.S. Embassy in a way that reflected his choices and our values. I was glad to have the chance to speak with him today and to congratulate him on being reunited with his wife and children.”
“Mr. Chen has a number of understandings with the Chinese government about his future, including the opportunity to pursue higher education in a safe environment,” she added. “Making these commitments a reality is the next crucial task.”
Mr. Chen entered the American Embassy six days ago with the assistance of American officials because of the “exceptional circumstances, including his disabilities,” a senior American official told American reporters traveling with Mrs. Clinton. “On humanitarian grounds we assisted him and allowed him to remain on a temporary basis,” the official said.
Mr. Chen, a lawyer who had campaigned against forced abortions and sterilizations conducted as part of China’s policy of limiting families to one child, suffered an injury to his foot during his escape from his house in Shandong province last week and was walking with the help of a crutch, the official said.
During his time at the embassy, Mr. Chen adhered to his position that he was not seeking asylum in the United States but wanted to stay with his family in China as a free person, said the official, who was involved in the three-way negotiations that involved Mr. Chen and officials from the United States and China.