CHINA TOPIX

Updated 10:35 AM EDT, Thu, Apr 18, 2019

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Hongkong Citizens Assemble at Victoria Park to Mark 26th Anniversary of Tiananmen Square Massacre

Hongkong Rally

(Photo : Reuters) People gathered on the streets of Hong Kong's Victoria Park to mark the 26th Anniversary of the Tiananmen Square massacre. Coordinators of the Hongkong event believe that more than 135,000 people turned up to show their support.

More than a hundred thousand Hongkong citizens gathered at Victoria park to mark the 25th anniversary of the June 4, 1989 Tainanmen Square crackdown.

Time magazine reports the sheer number of attendees spilled over the park's six soccer.  Coordinators of the event believe that more than 135,000 people showed their support.  However, Hongkong authorities said that only 46,000 people attended the affair. 

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On June 4, 1989, Chinese troops marched to Tiananmen Square to remove the tens of thousands students and protestors who had encamped there.  The number of protestors who died in the army crackdown are estimated to be in the thousands.

The Hongkong Alliance in Support of Patriotic Democratic Movements in China organized the vigil.  It was intended to unite all pro-democracy groups in Hongkong and the Chinese mainland.  However, a number of them declined to join the event.  Some of the groups in Hongkong believe that their goal and aspiration are different from those in the Chinese mainland. 

The Students' union at the University of Hongkong decided to hold a separate rally where they talk about how Hongkong and Taiwan can free themselves from Beijing's control.  The students however, maintain a minute of silence to honor those who died in the Tiananmen crackdown.

 Meanwhile, The Civic Passion organized a rally near the Kowloon harbor.  The demonstrators here are more combative.  They marched denouncing mainland China's communist party while burning its flag.  The group wants Hongkong to be an autonomous city.

At the Victoria Park, a reproduction of the Tiananmen Square's Monument to the People's Heroes and Democracy Goddess statues were displayed. 

The rally also honored Umbrella Revolution symbol through posters showing a yellow umbrella fashioned candles.  In a symbolic gesture, student representatives spoke against mainland China's meddling in Hongkong's political affairs.  They also burned on stage a copy of Hongkong's Basic Law.

Hongkong is the only Chinese city which has the freedom to commemorate the said event.  In Tiananmen Square itself, authorities made sure that no commemoration will take place according to Reuters. People have to undergo security checks before being allowed to enter the square. 

The Shanghaiist reports that even state media are careful not to make any reference to the 1989 crackdown.  Instead, the local press covered the vigil held by grieving relatives of the victims in recent Eastern Star tragedy in which most of the missing passengers are presumed dead. 

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