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  • Jul 26, 2014
  • Updated: 9:22am
Tiananmen Square crackdown
NewsHong Kong

Democracy activists unite to support June 4 vigil

Ignoring rifts in pan-democrat camp, groups will attend event and hope Hongkongers will remember courage of 1989 pro-democracy movement as well as bloody crackdown

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 03 June, 2014, 11:40am
UPDATED : Wednesday, 04 June, 2014, 3:05am

Democracy activists are not allowing the rift in the pan-democrat camp to fragment support for the annual Tiananmen Square memorial vigil in Victoria Park. And they hope that attendees at this year’s event will focus on the 1989 pro-democracy movement as well as the bloody June 4 crackdown that ended it.

Three groups – the Federation of Students, Scholarism and People Power – say they will continue to back the June 4 event despite their row with other democrats, in particular the Democratic Party, over political reform.

Their support is likely to be welcomed by vigil organiser the Alliance in Support of Patriotic Democratic Movements in China, which faces challenges from both ends of the political spectrum this year.

People Power member Christopher Lau Gar-hung said his group believes the candlelight vigil at Victoria Park is “iconic and bigger than the alliance itself”.

Student federation secretary general Alex Chow Yong-kang, 23, encouraged Hongkongers to attend the event as a “warning” for Beijing.

“If [Beijing] continues to trample on human rights … we are still here monitoring,” Chow said.

Chow, a third-year student at the University of Hong Kong, said the commemoration should also focus on the pro-democracy movement that preceded the crackdown.

“When we think of June 4, we usually remember the massacre on that day,” he said. “But the vigil seemed to be less focused on the 1989 pro-democracy students’ movement. Hongkongers should also reflect on the courage and determination involved in it.”

While the pan-democrats should remain united on calling for justice regarding the events of 1989, he agreed that the alliance could reflect on criticism it has received.

The three groups will snub a rival rally being staged across the harbour in Tsim Sha Tsui by lawmaker Wong Yuk-man’s Proletariat Political Institute.

Wong says the rally has “become part of Democratic Party electioneering”, referring to the close link between the party and the alliance that was chaired by late Democrat stalwart Szeto Wah from 1989 until his death in 2011.

“You can criticise the alliance for their ways of doing things, we do too … but if you are hosting an alternative rally, are you achieving things that [the alliance] cannot achieve?” Lau asked. “Or are you seeing the Democratic Party as bigger than June 4 itself?”

In another rival event, the pro-Beijing group Voice of Loving Hong Kong will show a video outside Victoria Park on Wednesday that it argues will prove no one died in Tiananmen Square during the military crackdown.

The federation and Scholarism also joined the alliance in its annual march from Victoria Park to government headquarters in Admiralty on Sunday. Afterwards the latter marched to the central government’s liaison office in Sai Wan.

On the challenges this year, the alliance’s vice-chairman Richard Tsoi Yiu-cheong said the alliance would insist on doing its job.

“We believe that the more vigil lights we have at Victoria Park, the more chance there will be that our call for the vindication of the June 4 protest will be answered,” Tsoi said.



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This article is now closed to comments

I hve read Mr Clark's article and it refers to declassified US Embassy SITREPS, one of which is: ****www2.gwu.edu/~nsarchiv/NSAEBB/NSAEBB16/#12-29
This states:
It would not be long after the U.S. Embassy in Beijing warned that the use of force was an option that it began reporting the PLA's attacks on demonstrators. That reporting, as well as information obtained by other means, is summarized in Document 12, a cable from the U.S. embassy in Beijing. The cable notes that troops, using automatic weapons, had advanced in tanks, armored personnel carriers (APCs), and trucks from several directions toward Tiananmen Square. The cable also reports that the American Embassy believed that the 50-70 deaths reported in the foreign media were probably much too low. It also notes that several American reporters "were severely beaten by Chinese troops on Tiananmen Square." As events in Beijing unfolded, the American Embassy provided a near-continuous flow of reporting, based on the accounts of newsmen, residents, and the observations of embassy officials.
The Secretary of State’s intelligence summary for the following morning (Document 13) reports that "deaths from the military assault on Tiananmen Square range from 180 to 500; thousands more have been injured."
It also describes how "thousands of civilians stood their ground or swarmed around military vehicles. APCs were set on fire, and demonstrators besieged troops with rocks, bottles, and Molotov cocktails."
A Kuro
See the post by J Cheng.
According to Gregory Clark, a former Australian diplomat, the Tiananmen Massacre was a myth and the lies continues to this day.
From the article by Gregory Clark it seems the truth about Tiananmen in June 4 1989 is more than what we have been told so far by the Western press. The credibility of the Western press is really questionable.
Gregory Clark made the following comments " Other strange details later to emerge included a report that Reuters, the British new agency, refused to publish a photo of a charred corpse strung up under an overpass — a photo that would have done much to explain what had happened. And we now discover that the widely distributed photo of Tankman — the lone student standing before a row of army tanks and heavily publicised as showing brave defiance against a cruel regime — was in fact taken the day after Tiananmen events, and the tanks were moving away from, and not into, Tiananmen Square."
Obviously the truth about Tiananmen is not being told!
I Gandhi
Interesting to note that the widely distributed photo of Tankman — the lone student standing before a row of army tanks and heavily publicised as showing brave defiance against a cruel regime — was in fact taken the day after Tiananmen events, and the tanks were moving away from, and not into, Tiananmen Square.
I experienced the sensation in HK at that time and like many HK citizens attached a piece of black cloth on my sleeve (Those who had experienced the event will know what it was.) After so many years of mind-cooling, I believe some blacks were not so black and some whites were not so white. At this time, I see many sectors are still milking this what I call a tragedy while some hype as a massacre for their political interests and turning it to an occasion to fill the coffers of their political parties.
Under the ideology and value system of the Chinese today, I don't think there would be any admission of wrongdoing from the Chinese government, therefore there would not be any pardoning or forgiving by someone in the government or among the then students , towards another someone. To put the whole thing behind so that we can all move forward, what we need today is a big reconciliation. The politicians should stop exploiting and to draw blood from the issue basing on only part of the incident any more, the entire Chinese nation needs to move forward.我們需要的是一個大和解不是互相仇視憎恨。
The whole incident has been captured by millions of media reports, with millions photos and videos and they are all put in archive。 We can commission a representative party to walk through all these information and to make up an accurate stories of the events, with a aim of reaching a big reconciliation for all.
Who to Forgive Who ?
The Chinese people to forgive the Government for the crackdown, or the Government to forgive the demonstrators for asking for freedoms already granted them in Chinese law but never implemented ?

Forgive, forgive, forgive...
Forgiveness is rendered much more difficult and is far less likely to occur when those at fault have refused to apologize and even less to admit their own wrongdoing. Before you appeal to whomever to forgive the tragic June 4th incident, you out to petition the Government of China to openly and honestly acknowledge it's fault in the matter.
No use forgiving when they keep forgetting.

Forgiveness is power


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