Sunday, May 29, 2011

Remembering the 1989 Beijing massacre and demanding justice

Around the world activities are planned to remember the Chinese people massacred by Chinese communist troops on June 4, 1989 following demonstrations in Tiananmen Square. Online you can demonstrate your solidarity with the Tiananmen Mothers by signing a petition at Fill the Square. In London a flash mob and vigil are being organized for the 22nd Anniversary Remembrance of the 1989 Beijing massacre. The Laogai Research Foundation in Washington D.C. is organizing In Memory of Tiananmen a commemoration and film screening of the documentary "Tankman" on June 3 at 6:30pm and in New York City on June 4 beginning at 12 noon E.S.T. Initiatives for China is organizing an event at the United Nations. More information on the activity at the United Nations below.

Victims and Families to Attend Commemoration of June 4th Movement at the United Nations.

Reporting from the office of Initiatives for China – On June 4th, 2011, Madam Xu Liping, widow of victim of the June 4th Movement, Yu Di, will join in the commemoration for the 22nd anniversary of the June 4th Movement, that will take place at the United Nations in New York. Bullets extracted from late Mr Yu Di will also be exhibited.

Born January 1st, 1957, in the city of Jixi, Heilongjiang Province, Yu Di was an assistant engineer at the Beijing Solar Energy Research Institute, a military veteran, member of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), a university graduate with several awards for his research. At 2am in the morning, on June 4th, 1989, the military troops confronted civilians between the areas of Nan Chi Zi to the Museum of History, and opened fire four times. In the first round of fire, bullets penetrated Yu Di’s his lower left rib through his upper right. The bullets shot through eight of his major organs, including liver, kidneys, lungs and spine. He was sent to Peking Union Medical College Hospital and operated on four times. He lost one kidney and had part of his liver removed. In the end, the severity of the injuries caused widespread infection. He died of multiple organ failure on June 30th, at the age of 32.

After Yu Di passed, his wife, Madam Xu Liping was left with their four year-old son. Life was difficult for Madam Xu and her son, who had only each other. However, she always took part in public events providing aid to victims of the June 4th Movement.

Recently, Madam Xu arrived in the United States. After she saw drafts of open letters – regarding the Chinese government’s serious and on-going human rights violations – to the Secretary-General of the United Nations by Dr. Yang Jianli, Madam Xu decided to join in the June 4th memorial event at the UN.

It is known that after Yu Di’s passing, Madam Xu Liping preserved the bullets extracted from her husband’s body. These bullets will be displayed at the June 4th memorial event, to honor those who lost their lives at the Tiananmen Massacre in Beijing.

With regards to the June 4th Massacre and the question of human rights, Madam Xu Liping has this to say, ‘Is mere appealing, reason for death? Is mere difference of political opinion, reason to be silenced? Is investigating the truth, reason to be imprisoned? Even more astonishing, not long ago, at the crackdown of civilians, Libyan leader Gaddafi cites June 4th as a model…” Madam Xu hopes the international community will pay attention to the question of human rights in China.

With regards to the question of the United Nations’ investigation and sanction of people responsible for June 4th violation of human rights in China, Madam Xu asks, “ When the citizens’ lives are insecure or regarded as valueless, where is the “responsibility” in the proclamation to the world of being a “large and responsible nation”? Where is the “air of a large nation” that is being shown to the world? As a member of the UN Security Council, with the audacity to declare and pledge the “security of humanity”, shouldn’t one reflect on one’s contribution and role to the security of humanity over the past 22 years?”

According to information from spokesperson of Initiative for China, Dr Yang Jianli, Mr Fang Zheng, who was disabled as a result of the June 4th Movement, will also participate in the event on June 4th, 2011, that will begin in the afternoon at the United Nations. In 1989, Fang Zheng saved a schoolmate as he was withdrawing from Tiananmen Square. A tank from the martial troop ran over Fang Zheng’s legs and as a result, both his legs had to be amputated. After the June 4th Movement, he was under long-term surveillance. In early 2009, with help from a human rights organization – Humanitarian China, Fang Zheng arrived in the United States.

Dr Yang Jianli said that this commemoration would be attended by the media, as well as international human rights organizations. All are welcomed to join, to commemorate those who lost their lives in the June 4th Movement, and to express their wish that the Chinese government will improve on human rights. The event will begin at noon on June 4th, 2011. – Zhao Guoyu

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