POLITICS – Full Lowdown & Photos from HK’s Tiananmen Vigil & Protests 13


Tonight, an estimated 180,000 Hong Kongers gathered in Victoria Park with candles to mark the anniversary of the 1989 Tiananmen Square massacre…

d7dKnl.jpg (640×359)

…As usual, the vigil is about more than simply paying respects to the dead and remembering the peaceful protesters who were killed by PLA troops 23 years ago…

qaWgMl.jpg (640×358)

…The annual event has also become a time to reflect upon the city’s relationship with the mainland, as well as a chance to take another look at Beijing’s democratic progress and human rights record…

EhLVHl.jpg (640×359)

…This year, the mainland’s stock markets took a surprise tumble on the anniversary. Taiwan called upon Beijing to re-evaluate their stance on the massacre and the BBC reported on how the US has urged China’s leaders to release activists arrested during the protests. The were also some small demonstrations in the mainland and a press release by activist Liu Xiaobo’s Support Committee…

fONOCl.jpg (640×359)

…The Goddess of Democracy stood in the centre of Victoria Park…

SB6wnl.jpg (640×359)

…whilst thousands of people and families mourned, sang songs, chanted slogans and listened solemnly to speeches and first-hand accounts of the crackdown…

9vfb3l.jpg (640×359)

…The HK Alliance prepared 80,000 candles for the event, and quickly ran out…

WGDTgl.jpg (640×359)

…HK remains the only place in China where annual protests – or even references to – ‘6/4’ are tolerated….

keWHUl.jpg (640×359)

… The 2012 vigil is the second gathering since the death of HK Alliance founder Szeto Wah….

bRTTtl.jpg (640×359)

…More and more mainland Chinese are attending the event each year…

DkqXWl.jpg (640×359)

…The SCMP quoted Belle Shu-ting, a 19-year-old student in attendance: “I learned about it in class and I found it be quite moving. I hope that this candlelight vigil will carry on until the June 4 event is vindicated”…

PXcf7l.jpg (640×359)

KFhkRl.jpg (640×359)

bKydLl.jpg (640×359)

…Activist Fang Zheng, whose legs were crushed under a tank in Tiananmen Square, became emotional as he laid a wreath for the dead…

QGlVFl.jpg (640×359)

9ML1Bl.jpg (640×359)

Ve7kjl.jpg (640×359)

JRdxSl.jpg (640×359)

3Qv8gl.jpg (640×359)

BHN5Sl.jpg (640×359)

AkZ6Cl.jpg (640×359)

qlopjl.jpg (640×359)

eHKgrl.jpg (640×359)

f2js9l.jpg (640×359)

Dm07Dl.jpg (640×359)

m33GIl.jpg (640×359)

PfVvbl.jpg (640×359)

Jt1jLl.jpg (640×359)

SCMP video…

The below SCMP graph shows how, typically, police estimates are half the organiser figures with regards to attendance levels. The true figure may lie somewhere in between…

tdiPX.png (510×261)

…Police estimated that 85,000 were present.

Here is a terrifying report from the BBC at the time…

The SCMP reported yesterday that more mainlanders were expected to attend the vigil and visit the temporary 1,000 sq foot museum in Sham Shui Po. Over 6000 people have attended since it opened in late April. CNNgo reports that the exhibition consists of a replica of the Goddess of Democracy and “a timeline of events, an interactive corner and books on the subject that are banned in mainland China.”

via Associated Press

via Associated Press

It is located at 2/F, 269 Yu Chau Street, Sham Shui Po, Kowloon, at the intersection of Yu Chau Street and Kweilin Street, near Sham Shui Po MTR exit C2

 6423logo.jpg (212×268)

Meanwhile, there were reports of a mass ‘banning’ of Facebook accounts in Hong Kong (including that of HK’s kindest man, Benson Tsang). Local independent media outlet Inmedia produced a short report featured, with translation, on Global Voices Advocacy. However, it emerged that technical problems on the social networking site were occurring throughout the world and access issues were not unique to Hong Kong…

jJsck.jpg (375×84)

Two weeks ago, the HK Alliance completed their annual protest march in the run-up to last night’s candlelit vigil…

Below is a remarkable video showing a group of Beijing University students who are either unaware – or unwilling to discuss – the significance of the infamous ‘Tank Man’ photo…

.

‘6-4’ remains a taboo topic on the mainland. The Shanghaiist reported on how Hong Kongers have found themselves locked out of mainland internet forums altogether. A candle emoticon and even an Olympic torch emoticon were ‘mysteriously’ removed from forum interfaces.

Here is a fascinating list of sensitive words, phrases and loosely connected expressions that were banned from use during the anniversary.

Below is what a Google search for ‘Tiananmen’ looks like outside of, and from within, the Great Firewall…

nXOU9l.jpg (640×512)

Finally, here is a full PBS documentary about the mysterious ‘Tank Man

The vigil "took place against a backdrop of growing public fears that freedom in Hong Kong will be eroded when Leung Chun-ying takes over as chief executive next month. Leung repeatedly refused to answer questions yesterday about the vigil and the bloody crackdown on student protesters on June 4, 1989." - SCMP

The vigil "took place against a backdrop of growing public fears that freedom in Hong Kong will be eroded when Leung Chun-ying takes over as chief executive next month. Leung repeatedly refused to answer questions yesterday about the vigil and the bloody crackdown on student protesters on June 4, 1989." - SCMP

Just outside of Victoria Park, 'Grass Mud Horses' were available to buy

Just outside of Victoria Park, 'Grass Mud Horses' were available to buy

Mqsg0l.jpg (640×280)

Other links on Hong Wrong…

External links…