Tiananmen 30 years on: Chinese exiles help keep memory of June 4 alive

Left: A demonstrator flashing the victory sign as workmen used a drape to cover a huge portrait of chairman Mao Zedong at Tiananmen Square in 1989. Above: An armoured personnel carrier crushing one of the tents set up at Tiananmen Square by pro-democ
A demonstrator flashing the victory sign as workmen used a drape to cover a huge portrait of chairman Mao Zedong at Tiananmen Square in 1989.PHOTO: REUTERS
Left: A demonstrator flashing the victory sign as workmen used a drape to cover a huge portrait of chairman Mao Zedong at Tiananmen Square in 1989. Above: An armoured personnel carrier crushing one of the tents set up at Tiananmen Square by pro-democ
An armoured personnel carrier crushing one of the tents set up at Tiananmen Square by pro-democracy protesters.PHOTO: REUTERS
Left: A demonstrator flashing the victory sign as workmen used a drape to cover a huge portrait of chairman Mao Zedong at Tiananmen Square in 1989. Above: An armoured personnel carrier crushing one of the tents set up at Tiananmen Square by pro-democ
Mr Wu Renhua
Left: A demonstrator flashing the victory sign as workmen used a drape to cover a huge portrait of chairman Mao Zedong at Tiananmen Square in 1989. Above: An armoured personnel carrier crushing one of the tents set up at Tiananmen Square by pro-democ
Ms Wang Chaohua

For Mr Han Dongfang, nothing that happens in China today can be worse than what he witnessed 30 years ago in and outside Tiananmen Square - flares lighting up the dark sky, soldiers shooting people with machine guns, "crazy tanks" rumbling into the square, people with their bodies covered in blood.

On June 4, 1989, the Chinese government turned its guns on its own unarmed youth who had been camping in the square since April to demand democratic reforms.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on June 03, 2019, with the headline 'Chinese exiles help keep memory of June 4 alive'. Print Edition | Subscribe