June 4, 2019, marks the 30th anniversary of the massacre in Tiananmen Square, when the Chinese government brutally cracked down on protestors who had been occupying the square.
Beginning in April 1989, student-led movements in Beijing, many of which were pro-democracy, began protesting in Tiananmen Square. Protesters called for political reform and the respect for human rights in the wake of the death of liberal Communist Party member Hu Yaobang. By late May, the growing protests pushed the government to declare martial law in an attempt to put an end to the unrest. Over June 3 and 4, the Chinese military began to clear Tiananmen Square, killing hundreds — it's impossible to know the death toll — of protesters in the process.
The event remains deeply controversial throughout China. Internet, textbook and media censorship of the events is widespread throughout the country.
Here are historical images from the protests.
Arthur Tsang Hin Wah/Reuters
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