The New York Times
Saturday, May 19, 2012 -- 6:17 AM EDT
Blind Chinese Dissident Leaves on Flight for the United States
BEIJING — Chen Guangcheng, the blind legal defender who made a dramatic escape from house arrest and whose decision to seek refuge in American Embassy jolted American-Sino relations, left China aboard a commercial flight bound for the United States, according to friends who have spoken to him.
Mr. Chen left Beijing on a United Airlines flight bound for Newark with his wife and two children at around 5:30 p.m. after facing earlier delays.
Earlier Saturday Mr. Chen told friends over a cellphone that he was excited to be leaving China but that he was also worried about the fate of relatives he leaves behind. “He’s happy to finally have a rest after seven years of suffering but he’s also worried they will suffer some retribution,” said Bob Fu, president of ChinaAid, a Christian advocacy group based in Texas.