Rights group: US asylum likely for China dissident

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BEIJING (AP) -- A U.S. rights campaigner says a deal securing U.S. asylum for a blind Chinese legal activist who fled house arrest is expected in the coming 24 to 48 hours.

Bob Fu of the Texas-based rights group ChinaAid said Monday that China and the U.S. are eager to reach agreement on the fate of Chen Guangcheng before annual high-level talks with Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and other U.S. officials begin Thursday.

Fu said a source close to the U.S. and Chinese governments told him a decision would come within days.

Chen's case has been raised repeatedly by the U.S. in talks with China. He fled house arrest a week ago and is reportedly with U.S. diplomats in Beijing.