Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Chen reports 'first concrete step' toward leaving China

Washington (CNN) -- Chen Guangcheng, the Chinese human rights activist who ignited a diplomatic frenzy when he escaped house arrest last month, has received passport applications for himself and his family, he said Wednesday.

The paperwork for Chen, his wife and their two children was completed and photos were taken at the Beijing hospital room in which he has been staying since he left the U.S. Embassy two weeks ago, awaiting his travel documents. Chen said local officials from his Shandong Province in eastern China visited him Wednesday, providing him with the forms.

"It's the first concrete step forward," Chen said.

The United States says it has taken all the necessary steps on its side to admit Chen. Read More