Tentative Deal Forged for China Activist's Release

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The United States and China are outlining a deal that will allow blind human rights activist Chen Guangcheng to leave the communist nation with his family.

The news represents the latest twist in a diplomatic tug-of-war that's being going on for days between the two countries. It's increasing tension between the two super powers and shining a spotlight on human rights violations in China.

Free at Last?

After days of isolation and moments of desperation, Chen appears to be coming to America.

The prominent, blind activist said he's been offered a fellowship at an American university and wants to come to the United States to study. The Chinese Foreign Ministry has granted their approval.

The United States was caught in the middle of the crisis when the human rights activist made a daring escape from house arrest and traveled to the U.S. Embassy in Beijing.

When Chen agreed to leave the embassy, Chen and U.S. officials were not aware that his wife had apparently been beaten.

"The interrogator told her very clearly, 'If your husband does not walk out of the U.S. embassy, we will kill you,'" China Aid founder Bob Fu said.

CBN News videographer Mark Bautista compiled footage of a Washington, D.C., protest in support of Chen Guangcheng.  Watch his web extra below.

The Obama administration has been trying to balance its support for human rights with maintaining ties with communist China. But some Republicans believe the Obama administration dropped the ball.

"If these reports are true, this is a dark day for freedom and it's a day of shame for the Obama administration," presumed GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney.

Chen still hasn't been able to speak directly to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, but for the first time since arriving in China for an economic summit she addressed Chen's situation.

"We are also encouraged by the official statement issued today by the Chinese government confirming that he can apply to travel abroad for this purpose," Clinton said Friday.

U.S. officials say that if and when Chen's visa application is processed in China, it will grant visas to him and his family.

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