China: Sentencing of protestor prompts fears of crackdown ahead of Tiananmen Square anniversary

Pro-democracy protestor blocking tanks © APGraphicsBank

The Chinese authorities must end the persecution of all those trying to remember the victims of the 1989 Tiananmen Square crackdown, Amnesty International said, after a man was jailed for 18 months today.

A court in Changshu, in eastern China, found Gu Yimin guilty of inciting state subversion after he tried to post images of the crackdown online and applied to stage a protest on the 24th anniversary, last year.

Anu Kultalahti, China Researcher at Amnesty International, said:

“Gu Yimin should be released immediately and unconditionally. Nearly 25 years on from the Tiananmen Square crackdown the authorities continue to stop at nothing to bury the truth of 1989.

“As the 25th anniversary approaches, this could well mark the start of the annual round-up of activists attempting to remember the tragic events of 1989.

“Rather than ratchet up such persecution the authorities should acknowledge what really happened and deliver justice for the victims.”

Hundreds, if not thousands, of protestors were killed or injured during the military crackdown against student protestors in and around Tiananmen Square in 1989.

The 1989 crackdown remains an official taboo in China. Attempts to commemorate, discuss and demand justice for what happened are forcefully curbed, with no public discussion allowed.

View latest press releases