Doctored front pages and selective omissions are two of the techniques Beijing has used to filter out the reform legacy of late Communist Party leader Hu Yaobang from high-profile commemorations on the centenary of the reformist’s birth.
A pro-democracy movement in the Chinese capital in 1989, triggered by the death of reformist ex-leader Hu Yaobang on April 15, developed into large-scale street protests and weeks-long sit-in and hunger strike at the Tiananmen Square by students and residents. After branding the movement a "counter-revolutionary riot," Communist Party leaders headed by Deng Xiaoping declared martial law in Beijing and ordered PLA troops to remove the protesters by force. Hundreds, if not thousands, of students and citizens were killed and wounded during the June 3-4 crackdown, which has also been known as the Tiananmen Square Massacre. The crackdown drew international condemnation, political isolation and arms embargo by the West.