Chinese activists mark Tiananmen crackdown despite surveillance

June 03, 2016 16:11
A file photo shows a Chinese soldier standing guard in Tiananmen Square in Beijing. Authorities have stepped up vigil ahead of the June 4 anniversary of the 1989 crackdown on democracy activists. Credit: Bloomberg

A handful of rights activists are traveling around China displaying placards mourning the victims of Beijing's 1989 crackdown on pro-democracy protesters, Radio Free Asia reported.

Beijing-based activist Qi Zhiyong is among those who are commemorating the student protests that took place in Tiananmen Square 27 years ago on June 4, according to the US-based broadcaster.

Qi, who was maimed when a tank ran over his legs on the night of June 3, 1989 in Beijing, got himself photographed wearing a T-shirt with the words "June 4th. Never Forget" printed on it.

Some other activists, including Guangdong-based Li Xiaoling, Dalian-based Jiang Jianjun and Shandong-based Wang Fulei, also did the same, prompting an investigation by the police, the report said.

"I am now under surveillance... The state security police are investigating me," Qi was quoted as saying.

Li, meanwhile, said she has been ordered by the state security police to leave Beijing.

Guangdong activist Bu Yongzhu said he fears younger people in China will forget, or never learn, what really happened 27 years ago.

"It's a sensitive topic, but I wanted to commemorate it, because if we don't, maybe young people, or future generations, will forget about it altogether," Bu told Radio Free Asia.

"The state security police are always getting in touch for a 'chat,' lately, probably because it's a politically sensitive date," he said. "They keep asking me whether I plan to take part in any events."

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