Events to Commemorate 21 years Since Tiananmen Square Massacre Print
Real China
By John Kusumi   

For the Chinese democracy movement, it's the biggest day of the year. For seven weeks in the spring of 1989, the pro-democracy uprising--led by Beijing college students--was in control of Tiananmen Square.

On June 3-4, 1989, Chinese troops of the oddly-named 'People's Liberation Army' shot their way into Beijing and retook Tiananmen Square, killing over 3,000 peaceful unarmed civilians in the process. It is famous as the "June 4" massacre.

Here are events happening this week around the world to commemorate the 21st anniversary of that bloody June 4:


Remember June 4, Pass On The Flame Vindicate June 4, Persist To The End
Free/Release Wang Bingzhang Free/Release Zhou Yongjun
Free/Release Liu Xiaobo, Support Charter 08 Free/Release Gao Zhisheng
Oppose Political Persecution, Protest Political Suppression

Hong Kong, June 4

Who: Hong Kong Alliance in Support of Patriotic Democratic Movements of China
What: Candlelight Vigil
Where: Victoria Park, football fields
Date: Friday, June 4, 2010
Tiime: 8:00pm

This event continues the annual tradition of observances for the June 4 anniversary. In 2009, some 150,000 people attended this event to mark the 20th anniversary of the June 4 massacre.

Hong Kong police have seized two Goddess of Democracy statues

Police in Hong Kong broke up a demonstration and arrested activists on May 29 as they tried to commemorate the 21st anniversary of Tiananmen Square, outside Times Square shopping mall in Causeway Bay. Because the police also confiscated a statue, the Goddess of Democracy (a replica of the statue which students erected in Tiananmen Square), there is a Facebook group that is threatening to march on the police station, if they do not return the statue by June 3.

From here at CSN, it looks like marching on the police station is not officially on the program of the Alliance. It appears that the Alliance and the Facebook group are two unrelated entities. Because we do not know otherwise, we would suggest that to march on the police station is a separate and distinct matter, "extracurricular" to the Candlelight Vigil. The vigil is the yearly ritual of the Alliance.

Who: Stage64
What: "Edelweiss," a theatrical play in Cantonese (love story centers in Tiananmen Square, '89)
Where: Auditorium of HKICC Lee Shau Kee School of Creativity
Date: Five shows on Saturday, Sunday, and Monday, June 5, 6, and 7, 2010
Time: 3:00pm and 8:00pm
Tickets: HK$80 through the Hong Kong Professional Teachers' Union
More: Discounts for students, seniors, disabled, and social security recipients; the first show on June 5 is a "special show for students" at half price.

New York, June 4

Who: New York area China Democracy Party, China Support Network, and other groups
What: Street protest
Where: Chinese Consulate on the west side of Manhattan, 42nd St/12th Ave
Date: Friday, June 4, 2010
Time: 6:00pm-9:00pm
More: Speakers may include Wang Juntao, Wang Youcai, and other leading dissidents; event to include musicians playing acoustically

Washington, June 2 and 3

Who: Initiatives for China
What: "A Peek Behind The Wall" open mic forum
Where: "Bus Boys & Poets," 5th and K Street, NW, Washington DC
Date: Wednesday, June 2, 2010
Time: 6:00pm-8:00pm
More: Chinese citizens from the mainland and abroad will speak of what it's like to be a citizen of China today. The open question: "How Has China Changed For Ordinary Citizens Since Tiananmen, 1989?"
Contact: Jim Geheran at 202.290.1423

Who: Initiatives for China, The Independent Federation of Chinese Students and Scholars (IFCSS), and co-sponsoring groups
What: Events at the Victims of Communism Memorial
(A.:) From 3:00-6:00, Initiatives for China continues "A Peek Behind The Wall" open mic forum (see above).
(B.:) From 6:00-9:00, IFCSS conducts the Candlelight Vigil in Washington -- an annual tradition to observe the June 4 anniversary.
Where: New Jersey Avenue/G Street, NW, Washington DC

Date: Thursday, June 3, 2010
Time: (A.:) 3:00-6:00pm; (B.:) 6:00-9:00pm
More: The Victims of Communism Memorial includes a statue of the Goddess of Democracy. It is found two blocks west of Union Station in downtown Washington, DC.

Mainland China

The activist, Yang Jianli, is known for his "Gong Min Walk" of 2008 in which he walked 500 miles from Boston to Washington, DC. He thanked Americans for their support (he had been a political prisoner, 2002-2007) and raised awareness of China's human rights abuses in advance of the anniversary of the June 4 massacre -- and in advance of the Beijing Olympics that year. Gong Min Walks have been replicated around the world by other activists, and now one is occurring inside Mainland China.

Yang Jianli says, "The idea of Gong Min walking as method of non violent protest is becoming recognized as an effective way for ordinary citizens to express dissatisfaction with government actions and policies while minimizing the threat of arrest....We do not expect a one shot success. We will take one step at a time. I believe citizens' rights have to be earned with patience and perseverance. Gradually China will change and advance towards democracy."

Yang Jianli heads the group, Initiatives for China, where the contact person is Jim Geheran at 202.290.1423. Initiatives for China is withholding the names and locations of Gong Min walkers in China to avoid tipping off the Chinese authorities with these details. The group will release more information upon the completion of related actions.

John Kusumi, China Support Network director emeritus