Liu Binyan, a one-time Communist Party journalist who became known in exile as the "conscience of China" has died of cancer in the US, Radio Free Asia reported. He was 80. Working for the People's Daily, Liu first came to fame for his glowing accounts of Mao Zedong's new China, but he was purged in the 1950s for semi-fictional accounts of abuses of power. Mao accused him of "fomenting turmoil". Rehabilitated in 1979, Liu's increasingly bold calls for free speech and exposes of official corruption led to his expulsion from the party in 1987. He arrived in the US in 1988. The Foreign Ministry declined to comment on Liu's life, saying, "We have already reached our conclusions about him."