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UK: Rally marking 35 years since Tiananmen Square crackdown

© Hong Kong Alliance

Leading Hong Kong human rights activists to speak highlighting the authorities’ crushing of dissent in the city

‘We will never forget what happened in Tiananmen Square 35 years ago and neither will we stop holding important solidarity and remembrance rallies like this one’ - Sacha Deshmukh

Amnesty International UK, China Deviants, Democracy for Hong Kong and Hong Kong Labour Rights Monitor are holding a rally in Parliament Square in central London on Sunday 2 June (2:30pm) to mark 35 years since the Chinese government’s brutal crackdown against peaceful demonstrators in Beijing’s Tiananmen Square.  

The event will commemorate the 1989 student-led protests and the Chinese government’s bloody crackdown on 4 June, as well as protest against China’s current clampdown on freedom of speech - including its increasing repression of Tibetans and Uyghurs, its crushing of dissent in Hong Kong, and the intimidation of Chinese and Hong Kong students in the UK, Europe and North America.  

Thirty-five years on, the Chinese authorities still ban information related to the Tiananmen crackdown and ruthlessly crush any protests associated with it.

Up until 2020, Hong Kong was the only part of China where Tiananmen could be commemorated - however, under the territory’s draconian national security laws it is now prohibited to publicly commemorate what happened in Tiananmen. 

Some people have paid a heavy price for defying this ban, including Chow Hang-Tung, who in 2021 encouraged people on social media to light candles in memory of the 1989 killings and remains in prison. This week she was charged as part of an unprecedented series of mass arrests in the city and 4 June marks her 1000th day in prison. 

We will never forget

Demonstrators will gather in Parliament Square from 2:30pm with banners and placards declaring “35 years on, Tiananmen we remember”, “In solidarity against repression”, “China: Hands off overseas students and activists”, and more.  Protests songs will be performed by musicians from the mainland China, and a protest art installation on the 1989 student protests will be on display.

There will be a 64-second silence at 3pm to pay tribute to all who sacrificed their lives and freedoms in the brutal attack in Tiananmen Square – 6 4 denote how June 4th is commonly referred to in Chinese.

Sacha Deshmukh, Amnesty International UK’s Chief Executive, said: 

“We will never forget what happened in Tiananmen Square 35 years ago and neither will we stop holding important solidarity and remembrance rallies like this one.

“Chinese state repression is currently rampant - from the ruthless purge of democracy activists in Hong Kong to the intimidation of Chinese students in UK towns and cities - and it’s vital that the international community, the UK included, stands up to this.”

Details of rally

When: Sunday 2 June, 2:30pm-5:00pm 

Where: Parliament Square, Westminster, London SW1P 3BD  

What: Demonstrators and speakers, including:

- Sacha Deshmukh, Chief Executive, Amnesty International UK

-Sarah Brook, China Director, Amnesty International

-Ni Peiqing, Founder, China Deviants

-Christopher Mung, Executive Director, Hong Kong Labour Rights Monitor

-Chung Ching Kwong, Senior Analyst, Inter-Parliamentary Alliance on China

-Zhou Fengsuo, Executive Director, Human Rights in China; co-founder, Humanitarian China; and former student leader during the 1989 Tiananmen protests



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