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Tiananmen 'Tank Man' re-enacted in Trafalgar Square PDF Print E-mail
[2 June 2014] The famous scene of an anonymous Chinese man stopping a convoy of tanks in Tiananmen Square in 1989 has been re-enacted in Trafalgar Square. Members of Chinese Uyghur Tibetan Solidarity UK (including representatives of Tibet Society) took part in the recreation to highlight the 25th anniversary of the Beijing protests and massacre.

The re-enactment took place on 31 May, just four days before the 25th anniversary of the Tiananmen Square massacre which saw over a thousand innocent people killed and thousands more imprisoned.

Tank man in Trafalgar SquareMembers of Chinese Uyghur Tibetan Solidarity UK held up boards depicting tanks similar to those used by the Chinese government in Tiananmen Square in 1989. The 'tanks' moved across Trafalgar Square before being intercepted by a solitary protestor.

The role of the protestor was played by different people, including Shao Jiang, a survivor of the 1989 protests who now lives in the UK, a young Tibetan boy (pictured right), members of the Uyghur and Tibetan communities in the UK and British activists.

Once the tanks were stopped the boards were flipped over to reveal messages in English and Chinese. The boards said:
  • "4 June 1989: Tiananmen Square, Beijing. Chinese Communist government sends in armed troops and tanks to suppress peaceful protests. Over 1,000 killed. Thousands imprisoned."
  • "Freedom. Human Rights. Democracy"
  • "Truth for June 4th. Massacre on trial. End Autocracy. Democracy Now!"
The re-enactment was part of Reclaiming Tiananmen, a series of events organised by Amnesty International UK and Chinese Uyghur Tibetan Solidarity UK to mark the 25th anniversary of the 1989 Tiananmen Square protests and massacre. The events include a panel discussion on 3 June, a candlelit vigil on 4 June, and an exhibition which runs daily until 5 June.
Click here for details of the "Reclaiming Tiananmen" events.

View more photos on flickr

Further reading:
27 May: Tiananmen Square Anniversary Prompts Campaign of Silence (NY Times)
29 May: China: Address Legacy of Tiananmen Massacre (Human Rights Watch)
31 May: China's Quarter Century Of Cracking Down On Dissent (AP)
2 June: Timeline: Tiananmen protests (BBC)
3 June: Tiananmen anniversary: China tightens crackdown (BBC)
3 June: China, the world remembers Tiananmen massacre (CNN)

Chinese Uyghur & Tibetan Solidarity UK is a coalition of organisations and activists that opposes the tyrannical rule of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) and works to promote human rights, freedom and democracy for all oppressed people and nations under the CCP.

The coalition includes the following organisations: Chinese Solidarity Campaign, Federation for Democratic China, Friends of Tiananmen Mothers, Students for a Free Tibet UK, Tibetan Community in Britain, Tibet Society, Uyghur Association and Uyghur Community UK.

Tibet Society, the worlds first Tibet support group, was founded in 1959. Funded by its members, it has been working for over 50 years to seek justice for Tibet through parliamentary lobbying, campaigns and actions. Help keep Tibet alive by joining Tibet Society today. (Annual membership 24; Family 36; Life 500)
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