torsdag 3. juni 2021

‘Mourn June 4 in your own way’: Tiananmen Square events vanish amid crackdowns and Covid

For the first time since the 1989 Tiananmen Square massacre, there will be no formal commemoration event held in the Chinese-speaking world for the anniversary. Thirty-two years after soldiers crushed student protests in Beijing and killed anywhere from several hundred to several thousand people, a combination of censorship, government crackdowns on criticism and pandemic restrictions will ensure no physical gathering is allowed in the People’s Republic of China (PRC), Hong Kong, Macau or Taiwan.

Remembering the violent events of 4 June has never been allowed in the PRC, where it has been officially censored. Each year around this time, the censorship increases: sensitive words, numbers, photographs, symbols, emojis – anything that could be a reference to the event – disappear online. Activists are sent on enforced holidays, online events are shut down, and security tightens around the Beijing square.