Flower Tribute to Tiananmen Square Massacre at Site of Removed-Statue on Campus in Hong Kong

Mainland China student shows his commitment to commemorating June 4.A mainland Chinese student paid tribute to the June 4, 1989, Tiananmen Square crackdown in the Chinese University of Hong Kong (CUHK) campus, where the Goddess of Democracy statue had been situated before being removed last year. He believed that Mainland Chinese should be more responsible for commemoration of the suppression. Mr. Li, a CUHK student who commemorated with flowers at the former site of the statue, felt that the statue would stay in his heart forever. Also he pointed out that Mainland Chinese should be more responsible in commemorating the massacre. However, the contrary has been the case as the massacre is mainly commemorated by Hongkongers and Taiwanese people. Even his classmates in China did not know about the crackdown. “My nationality is Mainland Chinese and I believe that this is the reason why I bear more responsibility to commemorate it,” he said. Mr. Li expressed his concern while he was planning to buy flowers for the commemoration. “Are there any policemen or security guards to stop me from placing the flowers at the site of the now-removed statue? “It was such a relief when I arrived at the site and saw there were flowers already [in place]—there were still like-minded people.” He said that he was able to know about the massacre after coming to study in Hong Kong. He learnt it from seminars, teachers and his peers. Despite that, he already knew there was a student democracy movement in 1989. He recalled that he participated in the candlelight vigil in 2019 at Victoria Park, where the traditional candlelight vigils took place, as an annual memorial for the massacre. And at the beginning of the Anti-extradition Law Amendment Bill Movement in 2019, he read the campaign advertisement about the June 4 assembly and the June 9 demonstration. “Hong Kong had more freedom at that time. These protests and movements are not allowed in Mainland China. I came to Hong Kong and thought that Hong Kong probably belonged to part of the western culture, therefore I wanted to participate, feeling people’s rights were empowered by a democratic society,” Mr. Li explained. However, the annual assemblies in the following years were banned by the Hong Kong Government. Even with no public gathering allowed, Mr. Li believed that for those who care about the massacre, they will still commemorate in their own ways by themselves. Mr. Li will return to Mainland China after graduation and he will continue to commemorate the massacre. “I may try different ways to commemorate, maybe by myself or by organising a small memorial event,” he mentioned. Removed-Goddess of Democracy Statue Stays Forever Without any prior notice, the Goddess of Democracy statue was removed by CUHK before dawn on December 24 last year. Based on a similar one erected amid the pro-democracy protest in Beijing 1989, the Goddess of Democracy statue was made and is one of the significant symbols of the related commemoration in Hong Kong. Last year in Hong Kong, not only was the Pillar of Shame statue removed by the University of Hong Kong, but a relief sculpture was torn down by the Lingnan University. All monuments related to the Tiananmen Square massacre are banned in Mainland China and these have gradually become a taboo subject in Hong Kong too. Mr. Li said that he was shocked when he learned from his peers that the statue had been removed. He criticised the CUHK for erasing the memory of the massacre because they want to show their loyalty to the government. “After the Goddess of Democracy statue was removed, I have a more impressive feeling. We walked and gathered here in its presence. But now it is gone. However I still intentionally take a look at the space where it was situated. Although the statue no longer exists physically, it stays in my heart forever.” A CUHK student called for “Look for Goddess of Democracy” activity and invited all the teachers and students to take part in searching for miniatures, in order to carry on the memory of the commemoration. In view of the political risk, the event was shortened and ended abruptly. [embedded content] Follow

Flower Tribute to Tiananmen Square Massacre at Site of Removed-Statue on Campus in Hong Kong

Mainland China student shows his commitment to commemorating June 4.

A mainland Chinese student paid tribute to the June 4, 1989, Tiananmen Square crackdown in the Chinese University of Hong Kong (CUHK) campus, where the Goddess of Democracy statue had been situated before being removed last year. He believed that Mainland Chinese should be more responsible for commemoration of the suppression.

Mr. Li, a CUHK student who commemorated with flowers at the former site of the statue, felt that the statue would stay in his heart forever.

Also he pointed out that Mainland Chinese should be more responsible in commemorating the massacre. However, the contrary has been the case as the massacre is mainly commemorated by Hongkongers and Taiwanese people. Even his classmates in China did not know about the crackdown.

“My nationality is Mainland Chinese and I believe that this is the reason why I bear more responsibility to commemorate it,” he said.

Mr. Li expressed his concern while he was planning to buy flowers for the commemoration.

“Are there any policemen or security guards to stop me from placing the flowers at the site of the now-removed statue? “It was such a relief when I arrived at the site and saw there were flowers already [in place]—there were still like-minded people.”

He said that he was able to know about the massacre after coming to study in Hong Kong. He learnt it from seminars, teachers and his peers.

Despite that, he already knew there was a student democracy movement in 1989.

He recalled that he participated in the candlelight vigil in 2019 at Victoria Park, where the traditional candlelight vigils took place, as an annual memorial for the massacre.

And at the beginning of the Anti-extradition Law Amendment Bill Movement in 2019, he read the campaign advertisement about the June 4 assembly and the June 9 demonstration.

“Hong Kong had more freedom at that time. These protests and movements are not allowed in Mainland China. I came to Hong Kong and thought that Hong Kong probably belonged to part of the western culture, therefore I wanted to participate, feeling people’s rights were empowered by a democratic society,” Mr. Li explained.

However, the annual assemblies in the following years were banned by the Hong Kong Government.

Even with no public gathering allowed, Mr. Li believed that for those who care about the massacre, they will still commemorate in their own ways by themselves.

Mr. Li will return to Mainland China after graduation and he will continue to commemorate the massacre.

“I may try different ways to commemorate, maybe by myself or by organising a small memorial event,” he mentioned.

Removed-Goddess of Democracy Statue Stays Forever

Without any prior notice, the Goddess of Democracy statue was removed by CUHK before dawn on December 24 last year.

Based on a similar one erected amid the pro-democracy protest in Beijing 1989, the Goddess of Democracy statue was made and is one of the significant symbols of the related commemoration in Hong Kong.

Last year in Hong Kong, not only was the Pillar of Shame statue removed by the University of Hong Kong, but a relief sculpture was torn down by the Lingnan University.

All monuments related to the Tiananmen Square massacre are banned in Mainland China and these have gradually become a taboo subject in Hong Kong too.

Mr. Li said that he was shocked when he learned from his peers that the statue had been removed.

He criticised the CUHK for erasing the memory of the massacre because they want to show their loyalty to the government.

“After the Goddess of Democracy statue was removed, I have a more impressive feeling. We walked and gathered here in its presence. But now it is gone. However I still intentionally take a look at the space where it was situated. Although the statue no longer exists physically, it stays in my heart forever.”

A CUHK student called for “Look for Goddess of Democracy” activity and invited all the teachers and students to take part in searching for miniatures, in order to carry on the memory of the commemoration.

In view of the political risk, the event was shortened and ended abruptly.

Teresa Zhang

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