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Tiananmen Square Massacre
« on: June 04, 2019, 02:11:25 PM »
Timeline: Tiananmen protests

In the spring of 1989, more than one million Chinese students and workers occupied Beijing's Tiananmen Square and began the largest political protest in communist China's history. Six weeks of protests ended with the Beijing massacre of 3-4 June.

15 April: Hu Yaobang's death

Former Communist Party chief Hu Yaobang, a leading reformist, dies of a heart attack aged 73. Mourners begin to gather in Beijing's Tiananmen Square. They are expressing their sadness, but also their dissatisfaction with the pace of reform in China.

18-21 April: Demonstrations spread

Numbers in Beijing swell into thousands in the following days, and demonstrations spread to cities and universities nationwide.

Students, workers and officials shout slogans calling for greater freedom and democracy and an end to what they called dictatorship - others complain about inflation, salaries and housing.

22 April: Hu's memorial

Tens of thousands of students gather outside the Great Hall of the People in Tiananmen Square as Hu's memorial service is held.

Their actions come in spite of an earlier warning by the city government that protesters risk severe punishment.

They deliver a petition of demands and insist on a meeting with Li Peng - China's premier at the time - which is rejected.

26 April: Inflammatory editorial

The state-run newspaper, the People's Daily, publishes an editorial entitled The Necessity for a Clear Stand Against Turmoil, accusing the protesters of rejecting the Communist Party.

The article closely mirrors views expressed by Deng Xiaoping, China's unofficial leader. It further fuels public anger.

4 May: Numbers rise

Tens of thousands of Chinese students in at least five cities stage the biggest pro-democracy demonstrations of their kind since the communists came to power 40 years ago.

The action coincides with the 70th anniversary of the 4 May movement, an intellectual movement that wanted a stronger China.

But at a meeting with Asian bankers Zhao Ziyang, the official head of the Communist Party, says the protests will gradually subside.

13 May: Hunger strike

Ahead of a visit by Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev, hundreds of students begin an indefinite hunger strike in Tiananmen Square, pressing for political reforms.

They blame their extreme action on the government's failure to respond to their requests for dialogue. The move draws broad public support.

15 May: Gorbachev's state visit

Mikhail Gorbachev arrives in Beijing for the first Sino-Soviet summit in 30 years. His visit is intended to put a formal end to years of hostility between the two communist nations.

The protests force the authorities to cancel plans to welcome him in Tiananmen Square - a huge embarrassment for the government.

19 May: Zhao visits square

Zhao Ziyang visits students on Tiananmen Square, and makes a final, unsuccessful appeal for a compromise.

Zhao is accompanied by Li Peng, his hard-line rival, and Wen Jiabao, who will eventually become China's premier in the future.

Zhao, who wanted China to introduce far-reaching political reforms, reportedly told the crowd: "We have come too late." It was to be one of his last political acts.

20 May: Troops move in

Martial law is declared in several districts in Beijing and troops move towards the city centre.

A huge number of civilians block their convoys, setting up barricades on streets. The soldiers have been ordered not to fire on civilians.

24 May to 1 June: Heightened tensions

Over the next week, demonstrations continue with almost no visible security presence - there is a jubilant atmosphere in Tiananmen Square.

Students, workers and officials take to the streets to ask for greater freedom and democracy
However, at government headquarters China's leaders plan a new offensive to end the demonstrations and end the chaos in China's capital.

2 June: Offensive approved

Communist Party elders approve the decision to put down the "counter-revolutionary riot" by force.

3 June: Night of bloodshed

In the evening, thousands of PLA soldiers begin moving towards the centre of Beijing. People flood on to the streets to try to block them, setting up barricades along routes into Tiananmen Square.

As the army tries to break through in armoured personnel carriers, some troops open fire with guns loaded with live ammunition, killing and injuring many unarmed citizens.

4 June: Anger and shock

Tiananmen Square is cleared after a night of the worst bloodshed ever seen in Beijing under communist rule.

As the new day begins, the capital is in a state of shock. Thousands of angry and curious residents crowd up to lines of soldiers blocking the north-east entrance. The soldiers open fire again.

There is sporadic gunfire throughout the day.

The government hails the military intervention as a great victory. An editorial is published saying the army would severely and mercilessly punish "lawless people who plan riots and disturb social order".

But Peking Radio's English language service, in an act of defiance, says thousands of innocent civilians were killed. The government-run radio calls the act a gross violation of human rights and a barbarous suppression of the people.

Afterwards the authorities claim no-one was shot dead in the square itself. There is still debate about exactly how many people were killed. Some say a few hundred, others say a few thousand.

5 June: 'Tank man'

The army now has complete control of Beijing. But the world witnesses a staggering act of defiance - the unarmed man blocking a column of tanks as they moved along Chang'an Avenue towards Tiananmen Square.

To this day, the fate of the man remains unknown.

9 June: Deng Xiaoping appears

China's paramount leader Deng Xiaoping appears for the first time since the brutal crackdown.

In a speech to military officers he praises their efforts, and blames the turmoil on counter-revolutionaries who wanted nothing less than to overthrow communism.
« Last Edit: June 06, 2019, 06:41:29 AM by adroth »


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Re: Tiananmen Square Massacre
« Reply #1 on: June 04, 2019, 02:11:48 PM »
World marks 30 years since Tiananmen massacre as China censors all mention
CNN Digital Expansion 2017. James Griffiths
By James Griffiths, CNN

Updated 12:47 AM ET, Tue June 4, 2019

Hong Kong (CNN)As commemorations for the 30th anniversary of the Tiananmen Square massacre take place worldwide Tuesday, any coverage or discussion of the event will be tightly censored in China.

Hundreds of people were killed on June 4, 1989, as People's Liberation Army troops cracked down on pro-democracy protesters in and around Beijing's Tiananmen Square. Events will be held and speeches made to commemorate the massacre and those who died in cities around the world.

In central Taipei, capital of self-ruled Taiwan, a massive inflatable version of the iconic "Tank Man," who defied the military as they entered Tiananmen Square, has been on display for several weeks.

On Monday, Taiwan's Mainland Affairs Council called on Beijing to "face up to historical mistakes and apologize as soon as possible for the crackdown."

"In the past 30 years, Beijing lacked the courage to calmly reflect on the historical significance of the June 4th Incident," the council's statement said. "Rather, they blocked the information and distorted the truth about it and tried to conceal the crime."

< Edited >
« Last Edit: June 04, 2019, 02:15:18 PM by adroth »


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Re: Tiananmen Square Massacre
« Reply #2 on: July 14, 2019, 06:40:44 AM »
On the 30th Anniversary of Tiananmen Square

JUNE 3, 2019

On June 4, we honor the heroic protest movement of the Chinese people that ended on June 4, 1989, when the Chinese Communist Party leadership sent tanks into Tiananmen Square to violently repress peaceful demonstrations calling for democracy, human rights, and an end to rampant corruption. The hundreds of thousands of protesters who gathered in Beijing and in other cities around China suffered grievously in pursuit of a better future for their country. The number of dead is still unknown. We express our deep sorrow to the families still grieving their lost loved ones, including the courageous Tiananmen Mothers, who have never stopped seeking accountability, despite great personal risk. The events of thirty years ago still stir our conscience, and the conscience of freedom-loving people around the world.

Over the decades that followed, the United States hoped that China’s integration into the international system would lead to a more open, tolerant society. Those hopes have been dashed. China’s one-party state tolerates no dissent and abuses human rights whenever it serves its interests. Today, Chinese citizens have been subjected to a new wave of abuses, especially in Xinjiang, where the Communist Party leadership is methodically attempting to strangle Uighur culture and stamp out the Islamic faith, including through the detention of more than one million members of Muslim minority groups. Even as the party builds a powerful surveillance state, ordinary Chinese citizens continue to seek to exercise their human rights, organize independent unions, pursue justice through the legal system, and simply express their views, for which many are punished, jailed, and even tortured.

We salute the heroes of the Chinese people who bravely stood up thirty years ago in Tiananmen Square to demand their rights. Their exemplary courage has served as an inspiration to future generations calling for freedom and democracy around the world, beginning with the fall of the Berlin Wall and the end of communism in Eastern Europe in the months that followed.

We urge the Chinese government to make a full, public accounting of those killed or missing to give comfort to the many victims of this dark chapter of history. Such a step would begin to demonstrate the Communist Party’s willingness to respect human rights and fundamental freedoms. We call on China to release all those held for seeking to exercise these rights and freedoms, halt the use of arbitrary detention, and reverse counterproductive policies that conflate terrorism with religious and political expression. China’s own constitution stipulates that all power belongs to the people. History has shown that nations are stronger when governments are responsive to their citizens, respect the rule of law, and uphold human rights and fundamental freedoms.