SalemNews.com, Salem, MA

Nation/World

June 5, 2014

Tens of thousands join Hong Kong Tiananmen rally

HONG KONG — Tens of thousands of people in Hong Kong joined a candlelight vigil in a downtown park yesterday to commemorate the 25th anniversary of China’s bloody military suppression of protests on Beijing’s Tiananmen Square.

Participants held candles to remember the victims at the vigil, which turned Victoria Park’s six soccer fields into an ocean of flickering light.

More than 180,000 people joined the gathering, according to organizers, while police put the crowd size at about 99,500. It was likely one of the largest turnouts for the annual event in recent years.

Democracy activists laid a wreath at a makeshift memorial as they read out the names of those who were killed in the military suppression on June 3-4, 1989, in the heart of Beijing. The crackdown killed hundreds, possibly thousands, of unarmed protesters and onlookers.

Many participants at yesterday’s rally wore white headbands on which were written “June 4 25 years” and followed chants urging China’s Communist Party to overturn its verdict on the protest movement. Beijing has said the protests aimed to topple the ruling party and plunge China into chaos.

The protests remain a taboo topic in mainland China, and Beijing has never given a full accounting of what happened during the crackdown or its human toll. But in Hong Kong, which retains Western-style civil liberties unseen on the mainland, the memory of the Tiananmen protests reinforces the widening differences with China 17 years after the territory ceased to be a British colony.

“When the whole of China is being silenced, I think the people of Hong Kong, now, with the freedom that we have, have the responsibility to light up the candle for them,” said Lee Cheuk-yan, a pro-democracy legislator and one of the organizers.

1
Text Only | Photo Reprints
Nation/World

Local News
  • Keenan to resign to take Salem State job

    SALEM — State Rep. John Keenan said Tuesday he will resign from office Aug. 24 to take a new job as vice president of administration at Salem State University.
    His announcement ended months of speculation about where the five-term Democrat would end up after leaving the Legislature. As it turns out, he is leaving four months before his term would have expired.

    July 29, 2014

  • Axe in Windshield Close call on I-95 in Topsfield when loose ax chops through windshield

    TOPSFIELD — Some motorists on Interstate 95 southbound had a scary moment Wednesday around 11 a.m. when a loose ax flew off a landscaper dump truck in front of them and cleaved partly through their car's windshield.

    July 30, 2014 1 Photo

  • Chism attorney challenging legislation

    DANVERS -- The attorney for the Danvers teen charged with raping and murdering his math teacher last October is arguing that the 1996 state law requiring that he be tried as an adult is unconstitutional. The argument by Philip Chism's attorney comes

    July 30, 2014

  • 140729_SN_DLE_PATROL4 Party problems persist in Point SALEM -- 'Tis the season for parties in the Point. Three years after a large Fourth of July gathering in the densely inhabited neighborhood led to a violent confrontation between partygoers and police, Chief Paul Tucker says his department continues

    July 30, 2014 3 Photos

  • lottery.jpg 'Lucky' Salem store sells $15M lottery ticket

    SALEM -- An anonymous person used a trust to claim a $15 million grand prize Tuesday from a $30 scratch ticket bought at a local corner store. It is the largest instant "scratch and win" prize ever in the state's history. Nicole's Food Store at 406

    July 30, 2014 1 Photo