35th Anniversary of the June 4th Massacre in 1989

From Tiananmen Mothers

 

Note by Tiananmen Mothers:  Due to well-known reasons, members of the Tiananmen Mothers and the families of the victims of the June 4th Incident were unable to gather in Beijing and hold a memorial ceremony. We can only read our memorials through video.
We will, as always, uphold the principles of peace, rationality, and the rule of law, and put forward our reasonable and legal demands to the government in the hope of seeking justice as soon as possible! Give the victims a fair and reasonable conclusion!

May your heroic spirits rest in peace!

 

 

The memorial article is as follows:

Today, we, the relatives of some of the victims, gather in Beijing to commemorate the 35th anniversary of the June 4th massacre. Looking at the photos of our loved ones, a mix of sorrow and anger fills our hearts, and the pain surges within us.

We cannot forget June 4th, 35 years ago, when your vibrant lives were struck down by bullets of evil, crushed by tanks, or disappeared without a trace. Those who vanished left no remains for their families to mourn over or bid farewell. Such an atrocity occurred during peacetime, on the ten-mile-long Chang’an Avenue in Beijing, China’s capital. It was too cruel to describe.

For 35 years, we have been unable to forget the image of you leaving home. The gunfire in the Beijing night made us anxious, fearing for your safety. When you did not return home safely and on time, we anxiously searched for you from hospitals to government

 

 

 

offices, tirelessly walking the path to bring you home. Upon hearing the dreadful news, our nervousness turned to complete collapse. We were heartbroken, devastated, and felt as if we were living in darkness without light, with only endless tears.

Some injured were brought to hospitals by citizens and were on the brink of life and death. Doctors performed one surgery after another, hoping for a miracle. Relatives guarded you day and night, praying for your recovery so that you could reunite with your families. However, the Chinese government, with cold-hearted orders, forbade rescuing the injured, prohibited blood transfusions, and sent troops to investigate the injured in hospitals. Hospitals were forced to label the injured under other conditions. When young lives fell from bullets, citizens who tried to rescue them were stopped by soldiers, who even stabbed the wounded with bayonets.

The Geneva Conventions by the International Red Cross clearly state: “Humane treatment of prisoners of war and neutrality for the wounded must be guaranteed. In times of war, efforts should be made to save the wounded regardless of nationality, ethnicity, or faith.” China is a signatory. Yet during the 1989 Tiananmen Massacre, China’s regular army shot at peaceful students and citizens, causing casualties and prohibiting rescue efforts, which defies morality and humanity. Everyone living on this land has the right to live and the dignity to be human. Rulers do not have the right to arbitrarily take lives.

Some students from other regions came to the capital Beijing, full of youthful dreams and carrying the hopes of their hometowns. These students, the most idealistic and ambitious young people after the resumption of the college entrance examination in the 1980s, would have been the pillars of the nation. Yet, with a single gunshot, their young lives were forever fixed on Chang’an Avenue, their blood staining the streets. 35 years have passed, the marks of that time erased by the ruthless years, but the bloodstains and their souls remain in the hearts of witnesses and their families. A mother from another province once said, “My child went to Beijing to study, but instead of finishing their studies, they lost their life!” Her heartache and helplessness towards the government’s actions were evident in her words.

Today, standing here and looking at the photos of our loved ones, we feel immense sorrow. We cannot help but ask the Chinese Communist Party and the Chinese government: Must social conflicts be resolved by taking lives?

Behind every life is a family—parents, siblings, spouses, and children. Losing a loved one overnight feels like the sky is falling. We cannot accept this cruel reality. As a group of relatives of the victims, we have the right to know the truth about the June 4th massacre, how many died, how many were injured, and how many were implicated. The government has the responsibility to explain the facts of that year’s massacre to the society, publish the list of the deceased, and apologize to society in the name of the government, restoring fairness and justice to us.

35 years have passed, and the government remains silent. What we see online is the Chinese Communist Party’s distorted narrative of the student movement in 1989 in its simplified history. Such reversal of truth and disregard for facts is unacceptable and intolerable. The student movement triggered by Hu Yaobang’s death had slogans against official profiteering and corruption, demanding the disclosure of officials’ personal assets and public supervision. These demands received broad support from all walks of life. People, with good intentions, hoped to express their wishes to the government in this way, expecting the government to listen to the people’s demands and to see a clean and honest government. Isn’t the current government also fighting corruption and discussing the proposal of “disclosure of officials’ assets”?

35 years have passed, and we ask again: What counter-revolutionary rebellion occurred during the June 4th massacre? Who were the counter-revolutionaries? What key government departments were attacked on June 4th? What were the rumors spread? After the army cleared Tiananmen Square, the government spokesperson publicly claimed that no shots were fired, and no one died on Tiananmen Square. If no shots were fired and no one died, how could there have been a counter-revolutionary rebellion incited by counter-revolutionaries on Tiananmen Square? Why does the simplified history mention Tiananmen Square but not the students? Why does it not mention the decisive measures taken, the army’s innocent killings that terrified tens of thousands of people on Chang’an Avenue? Only true history can make future generations reflect and learn.

Since June 4th, the government has ignored the legitimate demands of the relatives of the innocent victims, constantly interfering with their normal lives in various ways. The government has always emphasized ruling the country by law and people-oriented policies, yet it has consistently ignored the demands of the relatives of the June 4th victims, completely deviating from the principle of putting people and lives first.

For 35 years, we have repeatedly appealed to the national leaders, hoping to have a sincere and equal dialogue with the government on the following matters related to the June 4th incident:

  1. Publicly disclose the list and number of those killed in this incident;
  2. Provide appropriate compensation to the victims and their families according to law;
  3. Pursue legal responsibility for those accountable for the incident according to legal procedures.

These are the three consistent demands of our group: truth, compensation, and accountability.

On the 35th anniversary of the June 4th massacre, we once again earnestly appeal to President Xi Jinping and the government, hoping for a dialogue on related issues. The June 4th massacre is a historical tragedy that the Chinese government must face and account for to the people. Certain individuals in the government at that time should be held legally accountable for the wrongful killings. For 35 years, we have endured the pain of losing our loved ones. Many parents who lost their children back then have passed away, leaving with endless regrets. If the government sincerely puts this massacre on the agenda, it will be the greatest comfort to the parents who are still alive.

 

This year, we lost another two victims: Qi Zhiyong, a disabled person who passed away on January 2nd at the age of 68. He was injured at the Xidan Six Ministry intersection, had his left leg amputated, and suffered from hepatitis C from a blood transfusion. For 35 years, he endured physical torment. His life was completely changed by the June 4th massacre. The other victim is Jia Fuquan, who died of COVID-19 on March 7th at the age of 80. His wife Mu Guilan, a worker at Jingmian Third Factory, was shot and killed by troops on the morning of June 4th, 1989, at Chaoyangmen overpass while buying breakfast for her family.

We also mourn these two individuals here, hoping their souls can rest in peace! We will continue to uphold your wishes until justice is achieved!

Signatories:

You Weijie, Guo Liying, Zhang Yanqiu, Wu Lihong, Zhu Zhidi, Ye Xiangrong, Ding Zilin, Zhang Xianling, Zhou Shuzhuang, Qian Putai, Wu Dingfu, Song Xiuling, Sun Chengkang, Yu Qing, Sun Ning, Huang Jinping, Meng Shuying, Yuan Shumin, Liu Meihua, Xie Jinghua, Ma Xueqin, Kuang Ruirong, Yang Darong, He Tianfeng, Liu Xiuchen, Shen Guifang, Xie Jingrong, Yao Furong, Meng Shuzhen, Shao Qiufeng, Tan Hanfeng, Wang Wenhua, Chen Mei, Zhou Yan, Li Guiying, Xu Baoyan, Di Mengqi, Wang Lian, Guan Weidong, Liu Shuqin, Sun Shanping, Liu Tianyuan, Huang Dingying, Xiong Hui, Zhang Caifeng, He Ruitian, Tian Weiyan, Yang Zhiyu, Li Xianyuan, Wang Yuqin, Fang Zheng, He Xingcai, Liu Ren’an, Qi Guoxiang, Han Guogang, Pang Meiqing, Huang Ning, Wang Bodong, Zhang Zhiqiang, Zhao Jinsuo, Kong Weizhen, Liu Baodong, Qi Zhiying, Fang Guizhen, Lei Yong, Ge Guirong, Zheng Xiucun, Gui Delan, Wang Yunqi, Huang Xuefen, Guo Daxian, Wang Lin, Zhu Jingrong, Mu Hailan, Wang Zhengqiang, Ning Shuping, Cao Yunlan, Feng Shulan, Fu Yuanyuan, Li Chunshan, Jiang Yanqin, He Fengtong, Xi Yongshun, Xiao Zongyou, Qiao Xiulan, Lu Yanjing, Li Haoquan, Lai Yundi, Zhou Xiaojiao, Zhou Yunjiao, Chen Yongbang, Liu Yongliang, Zhang Jingli, Sun Haiwen, Wang Hai, Lu Sanbao, Yao Yueying, Ren Gailian, Ni Shishu, Yang Yunlong, Cui Linsen, Wu Weidong, Wang Deyi, Shi Jing, Yuan Ren, Bao Limei, Xi Guijun, Zhong Junhua, Zha Aiqiang, Chen Weidong, Hao Jian, Zhang Suying, Lin Li, Duan Changqi.

(Total: 114 people)

 

According to the proposals of our comrades, we have decided to append the list of comrades who signed in previous years and have since passed away, to respect the wishes of the deceased:

Wu Xuehan, Su Bingxian, Yao Ruisheng, Yang Shiyu, Yuan Changlu, Zhou Shuzhen, Wang Guoxian, Bao Yutian, Lin Jingpei, Kou Yusheng, Meng Jinxiu, Zhang Junsheng, Wu Shouqin, Zhou Zhigang, Sun Xiuzhi, Luo Rang, Yan Guanghan, Li Zhenying, Kuang Diqing, Duan Hongbing, Liu Chunlin, Zhang Yaozu, Li Shujuan, Yang Yinshan, Wang Peijing, Yuan Kezhi, Pan Muzhi, Xiao Changyi, Zha Weilin, Liu Jianlan, Suo Xiunü, Yang Ziming, Cheng Shuzhen, Du Dongxu, Zhang Guirong, Zhao Tingjie, Lu Masheng, Jiang Peikun, Ren Jinbao, Zhang Shuyun, Han Shuxiang, Shi Feng, Wang Guirong, Sui Lishong, Tian Shuling, Sun Shufang, Chen Yongchao, Sun Hengyao, Xu Jue, Wang Fandi, Li Xuewen, Wang Shuanglan, Zhang Zhenxia, Xiao Shulan, Tan Shuqin, Gao Jie, Jin Yaxi, Xing Chengli, Zhou Guolin, Hao Yichuan, Lu Yubao, Cao Changxian, Yin Min, Liu Qian, Lin Wuyun, Jin Zhenyu, Feng Youxiang, Wang Huirong, Zhu Yuxian, Zhang Shusen, Wang Guangming, Qi Zhiyong, Jia Fuquan.

(Total: 73 people)