fredag 4. juni 2021

Hong Kong vigil leader arrested as 7,000 police enforce ban on Tiananmen anniversary protests

Hong Kong police have arrested a prominent barrister for allegedly promoting an unauthorised assembly on the anniversary of the Tiananmen Square massacre, as thousands of officers were deployed to enforce a ban on protests and gatherings across the city. On Friday, Hong Kong barrister and activist Chow Hang Tung, vice-chairwoman of the group which organises annual vigils for the victims of China’s 1989 crackdown on pro-democracy protesters, was arrested, two group members said.

Chow was arrested for promoting an unauthorised assembly, Chiu Yan Loy, Executive Member of the Hong Kong Alliance in Support of Patriotic Democratic Movements of China, told Reuters in a text message. Discussion of Beijing’s brutal military crackdown on the evening of 3 June and morning of 4 June, 1989 is all but forbidden on the mainland. And Hong Kong’s traditional status as the only place in China where large-scale commemorations were tolerated appeared to be coming to an end.

Thousands of police were deployed on Friday to enforce a ban on the city’s traditional candlelight vigil, which has drawn huge crowds to Victoria Park on 4 June for more than three decades. The day has traditionally served as a display of pro-democracy people power that China has made clear it will no longer tolerate.