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Ai Weiwei Receives Three-Year German Visa

Ai Weiwei's German visa. VIA INSTAGRAM

Ai Weiwei’s German visa.

VIA INSTAGRAM

Ai Weiwei’s spokesperson has announced that the Chinese artist and free speech activist has been given a three-year German visa, and will be taking up a professorship at Berlin’s University of the Arts. Ai posted a photo of the visa, which expires in October 2018, on his Instagram account. His partner and son have been living in Berlin for almost a year. This past July, Chinese officials unexpectedly returned Ai’s passport, which they had seized four years ago after detaining him for 81 days.

A Reuters article notes that “Ai has praised Berlin as a creative sanctuary that reminds him of New York in the 1980s and 1990s when he lived there.”

In August, Ai told the same outlet that the Chinese economy had reached a critical low that could only be rectified by increasing democratic freedom, a direction that the Communist government was “openly refusing to go in.”

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