Hong Kong commemoration of the Tiananmen massacre by Stealth

Hong Kong residents who wanted commemorate the 33rd Anniversary of the brutal crackdown at Beijing's Tiananmen square this Saturday, June 4, were forced to do it privately or subtly as police warned against public gatherings.

Hong Kong commemoration of the Tiananmen massacre by Stealth

Hong Kong residents who wanted commemorate the 33rd Anniversary of the brutal crackdown at Beijing's Tiananmen square this Saturday, June 4, were forced to do it privately or subtly as police warned against public gatherings.

The Chinese authorities have been trying to erase Tiananmen collective memory for 33 years. It is not mentioned in history textbooks. This topic is systematically suppressed from online discussions.

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The communist regime sent tanks to quell peaceful protestors who had for several weeks occupied Tiananmen Square, demanding political change.

Many people were killed in the crushing of the movement, some even more than a thousand.

Beijing authorities installed facial recognition devices on the streets leading to the square. This Saturday, a large number of police officers conducted invasive identity checks.

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In China, recalling the events of 1989 is taboo. Hong Kong, however, was an exception to this rule until 2020. After the massive 2019 pro-democracy protests, Beijing imposed a harsh national security law in the semi-autonomous area to suppress all dissent.

Local authorities have worked since then to erase any traces of Tiananmen's memory.

Hong Kong police warn that participation in "unauthorized assembly" can lead to up to five years imprisonment. This warning is especially relevant to Victoria Park where once tens of thousands of people gathered for a candlelight ceremony on June 4.

This park was shut down for large parts on Friday night. Agents were also present on Saturday.

A dozen officers arrested a local artist who had made a potato candle shape with a lighter in Causeway Bay's commercial district.

According to AFP, a Hong Kong resident lit a candle at her home and placed a replica of "Goddess of Democracy", a statue symbol of Tiananmen Movement's Tiananmen Movement on a window sill.

"For me, and many Hong Kongers of our generation, June 4, was a political awakening," stated the 49-year old, who was a high school student at these events, and later became an activist with The Hong Kong Alliance, which organized the candlelight vigils in the Park.

In the name of fighting Covid-19, Vigils were already banned in 2020 and 2021. In the name of fighting Covid-19, Vigils were already banned in 2020 and 2021. The Hong Kong Alliance was then disbanded last September. Its June 4 Museum was closed. Leaders were also arrested.

Lee Cheuk-yan, a former leader of the Alliance, announced in a post online that he would fasted, light a match and perform memorial songs in his prison cell.

He wrote, "I believe Hong Kongers would join me in marking the 4th of June in all sincerity and using their own means express their commitment towards democracy."

In light of the lack of clarity regarding what is legal and not, six Hong Kong universities have unbolted their campuses in recent months.

One of the last things Hong Kongers will remember Tiananmen is the annual Catholic mass, which was canceled again this year out of fear of being prosecuted.

Internationally, the Tiananmen memorial continues to be honored. Exiled dissidents have set up their own museums in America. Activists are also planning to revive in Taiwan the "Pillar of Shame", a sculpture that was recently destroyed in Hong Kong.

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken praised the 33-year-old "brave protesters" in Tiananmen Square, China on Twitter.

He wrote, "Despite the removals of memorials and attempts at erasing history, we honor them by promoting respect for humanity wherever they are endangered."

Numerous Western consulates in Hong Kong have posted Tiananmen-related messages to social media. The cover photo of the United States' Facebook page featured the "Pillar of Shame".

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