Hong Kong police detain activist, five others on Tiananmen anniversary

Visitors pose for a group photo at a trade fair organized by pro-Beijing groups in Victoria Park, the city's venue for the annual 1989 Tiananmen crackdown vigil, in Hong Kong, Sunday, June 4, 2023. In Hong Kong, which had been the last Chinese-controlled territory to hold commemorations, several people were detained on the eve of the 34th anniversary of the crackdown, a move underscording the city’s shrinking room for freedom of expression.- AP

HONG KONG, June 4, 2023 (AFP): Hong Kong police detained Alexandra Wong, a prominent democracy activist better known as "Grandma Wong", and five others on Sunday, the 34th anniversary of the Tiananmen Square crackdown, AFP reporters said.

Wong was carrying flowers in Hong Kong's Causeway Bay shopping district, an area that for years was the site of commemorations for the bloody June 4, 1989 crackdown in China.

Authorities surrounded the 67-year-old and escorted her to a police van. Wong held the flowers high in the air and followed the authorities without resisting.

At least five other people were detained on Sunday in Causeway Bay, according to AFP reporters.

One of them was a woman who shouted, "Raise candles! Mourn 64!" -- shorthand for the sensitive date.

Another was a young man dressed in black who carried a book titled "35th of May", another covert way to express the four days after May 31 in mainland China.

For decades Hong Kong was the only Chinese city with large-scale public commemoration of the Tiananmen events -- a key index of liberties and political pluralism afforded to its semi-autonomous status.

Since 1990, an annual vigil had been held in Causeway Bay's Victoria Park, drawing tens of thousands to a candlelight memorial.

But in 2020, a national security law was imposed on the city by Beijing to quell dissent, after huge and at times violent pro-democracy demonstrations rocked the finance hub.

Since then, the vigil has been banned and its organisers arrested and charged under the security law.

Leading up to this year's anniversary, officials repeatedly refused to confirm if public mourning of the event was illegal, only saying that "everyone should act in accordance with the law". - AFP

Subscribe now to our Premium Plan for an ad-free and unlimited reading experience!

Next In Aseanplus News

Rugby-Uruguay’s Dosantos to miss New Zealand showdown after ban
South Korea's eSports superstar 'Faker' in line for military exemption after Asian Games gold
Afghan woman sprinter sends message of defiance at Asian Games
India foreign minister says he spoke to Blinken, Sullivan about Sikh separatist murder
Swimming superstars Qin and Zhang star as China send Olympic warning in Asian Games blitz
Eain Yow and Co lose in team semis but women in final
US Supreme Court to hear Warner Music case on limits to copyright damages
Asean News Headlines at 9pm on Friday (Sept 29, 2023)
Mohd Azeem qualifies for Asian Games 100m semi-finals
Bangkok readies new airport terminal to deal with tourists rush

Others Also Read