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Friend: Police note blind activist's escape legal

A friend of blind Chinese activist Chen Guangcheng says police have acknowledged to him that Chen did not break any laws by escaping from house arrest and apparently entering the U.S. Embassy.

Beijing activist Hu Jia said Tuesday that two police officers who questioned him for 24 hours over the weekend noted that Chen, as well as two friends who helped him flee his guarded farmhouse in eastern China more than a week ago, did not act illegally.

Hu cites police as saying the three individuals are free citizens who are not facing any legal trouble for Chen's escape.

The police acknowledgment is an indication that Chen's troubles with the authorities have primarily been about revenge by local leaders who were angered by his exposing of forced abortions.