Chinese Nobel Peace Prize laureate Liu Xiaobo has died aged 61, officials said.

China’s most prominent political prisoner had been treated in hospital for advanced liver cancer diagnosed in May.

Protesters display portrait of jailed Chinese Nobel Peace laureate Liu Xiaobo (AP)Protesters display portrait of the jailed Chinese Nobel Peace laureate (AP)

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The judicial bureau in the north-eastern city of Shenyang said on Thursday that he died of multiple organ failure.

His supporters and foreign governments had urged China to allow him to receive treatment abroad, but Chinese authorities insisted he was receiving the best care possible for a disease that had spread throughout his body.

Police watch demonstrators outside the Chinese liaison office in Hong Kong (Vincent Yu/AP)Police watch demonstrators outside the Chinese liaison office in Hong Kong (Vincent Yu/AP)

Mr Liu was imprisoned for the first time in connection with the 1989 Tiananmen Square pro-democracy protests.

He was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 2010 while serving his fourth and final prison sentence, for inciting subversion by advocating sweeping political reforms and greater human rights in China.