This gallery of photos commemorates the 1989 student protests for democracy that led to the massacre in Tiananmen Square a quarter-century ago on June 4.
The Chinese Communist Party has attempted to suppress all images relating to these events, but we were able to obtain these photos here.
Flowers were dedicated on April 17 to Hu Yaobang, the disgraced former Party Secretary, who was sympathetic to pro-democracy advocates. His death on April 15 marked the beginning of the student movement.
After Hu Yaobang’s memorial service, Guo Haifeng and two others knelt in front of the eastern steps of the Great Hall of the People, presenting their petition for reform in China, but were not received by Premier Li Peng, who was inside the building.
The April 27 march was a protest against the April 26 editorial by state mouthpiece People’s Daily, entitled: “Must resolutely oppose any unrest.” More than 1 million students and citizens took part.
Students carried a banner saying, “Hello, Mr. Democracy” on May 4.
This bicycle demonstration on May 10 was probably the first of its kind in the world, and well suited China’s state of reality.
Pupils took to the streets on May 15 to support the actions of their big brothers and sisters, carrying signs that read “down with corruption.”
Monks re-entered “the secular domain” on May 17 to support the students who were on a hunger strike.
Camping outside in Tiananmen Square on May 19, students either slept on the ground, or stayed in buses or tents. A Republic-on-the-Square was formed in the center of China’s capital.
A mother introducing her son to a martial law soldier on an army truck on May 20.
Students staying in Tiananmen Square passed the time with a dance on May 22, after occupying the area for nine days.
Left: The famous portrait of Chairman Mao overlooking Tiananmen Square was splattered with paint by three men on May 23. Workers immediately covered the portrait.
The broadcast station, Voice of the Student, at the base of “the Monument of the Martyrs” on May 24.
In the morning of May 30, the Goddess of Democracy was to be unveiled, resembling the rising sun and symbolizing the uplifting of democracy on China’s horizon.
The Commanding Center of the Square invited children to spend their June 1 International Children’s Day under the Goddess of Democracy on the square.
A Beijing university student gathering bamboo as they erected tents to protect them from the heat in Tiananmen Square on June 2.
A student pro-democracy protester flashes victory signs to the crowd on June 3, as troops withdraw on the west side of the Great Hall of the People near Tiananmen Square.
Students carrying their wounded classmates to hospital for emergency resuscitation.
Many June 4 victims died after being shot with Dumdum bullets, which were internationally prohibited.
A rickshaw driver takes the wounded to a nearby hospital with the help of bystanders. Soldiers fired hundreds of rounds into the crowds gathered outside Tiananmen Square.
On the morning of June 4, soldiers were still shooting at citizens. The picture shows a few wounded people lying in the Chang An Street and others helping them.
Special forces in camouflage uniforms rushed the Hero’s Memorial,
driving off students at 5 a.m. on June 4.
Wang Weilin, who stood alone before the marching tanks on June 5, and was listed one of the heroes of the 20th century, although nobody really knows who he was, and where he is now.
Soldiers guarding Tiananmen Square hunker down behind barracades on June 6 while heavy artillery looms in the background under the portrait of Chairman Mao.
Crowds of curious Being residents gather to look at the military machinery in Tiananmen Square on June 7.
Deng Xiaoping, Chairman of the Central Military Commission, met with top commanders from the martial law enforcement troops on June 9 to show that he was now in control of the situation.