Tiananmen Square Massacre 1989 in China
In May 1989, thousands of protestors mostly young Chinese students, crowded into central Beijing protesting against communist party leaders who were deemed too repressive.
The protests were triggered by the death of communist party general, Hu Yaobang, who was deposed after losing a power struggle with hardliners over the direction of political and economic reforms on April the same year. For nearly three weeks the protestors kept up with daily matching and chanting.
Much of the drama was capture on the newspapers and news all over the world. However on June 4th 1989 Chinese troops and security police matched into the Tiananmen Square and shot into the crowds of protestors indiscriminately leading to what is today known as the June fourth incident or the ’89 democracy movement.
It became the June 4th massacre as troops with assault rifles and tanks tried to make their way to the Tiananmen Square where the protestors had been for seven weeks and were block by unarmed civilians. The troops inflicted casualties on the civilians. The Chinese government condemned the protests as a counter-revolutionary riot.
Turmoil broke out as tens of thousands of students tried to escape and others tried to fight back by stoning the troops. There is no data about how many people were killed or injured that day due to lack of information from china but it is thought to be a few hundred to a few thousands.
After the aftermath the government conducted a country wide arrest of protestors and their supporters, expelled foreign journalists, controlled the coverage of the events in the domestic press and strengthened the police and internal securities.
These actions were internationally condemned and the western governments declared economic sanctions and arms embargoes in response to it violation of human rights. The actions shocked both its allies and the cold war enemies.