- (Photo: Reuters/Bobby Yip)
Thousands of people have gathered in Hong Kong to mark the 22nd anniversary of the Tiananmen Square crackdown, which saw the bloody slaughter of hundreds of people, Saturday June 4, 2011.
22 years ago in 1989 Chinese government tanks and soldiers entered Tiananmen Square in Beijing and brutally crushed escalating pro-democracy protests.
The anniversary comes as the Chinese government enforces its toughest clampdown on dissents in years, detaining dozens of lawyers, writers and artists over recent months.
Hundreds, perhaps even thousands, are believed to have been killed when government tanks and soldiers were commanded to clear the square on the night of June 3-4, 1989.
Numerous international human rights groups including U.S.-based Human Rights Watch have repeatedly called for China to be held accountable for its past human rights offences, however Beijing on Thursday reiterated its position that the matter was closed, according to AFP.
It was reported this week by the Tiananmen Mothers group that Chinese police had for the first time raised the possibility of offering compensation to the families of those killed in the Tiananmen crackdown.
In its annual open letter this week the group told that police had twice met relatives of one victim since February.
The letter claimed, however, that police did not discuss any form of official apology for the killings or a public account of who ordered the killings, which have been two of the group's long-standing goals.