Reuters reports that Premier Wen Jiabao is supporting leniency for the student who threw a shoe at him during a speech at Cambridge University:
“Education is best for a young student, and I hope he will have the opportunity to continue his education. The return of a prodigal is worth more than gold,” said the message from Wen, posted on the Foreign Ministry website over the weekend.
“I hope the student recognises his mistake and uses his developing eyesight to recognise the real China.”
The gesture “aroused the strong indignation of the audience and the entire Chinese people, and hurt the image and reputation of Cambridge in China,” read the message, which was conveyed through Fu Ying, the Chinese ambassador to Britain.