With Eye on June 4, China Rounds Up Activists

At least 20 detained ahead of Tiananmen anniversary, Amnesty says
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted May 30, 2014 12:54 AM CDT
China Rounds Up Activists Before Tiananmen Anniversary
Former Tiananmen protest leader Wu'er Kaixi is seen during an interview in Taipei, Taiwan.   (AP Photo/Wally Santana)

Chinese authorities have detained at least 20 activists amid increasingly intense efforts to suppress commemorations of next week's 25th anniversary of the 1989 crackdown on the Tiananmen Square pro-democracy protests. The latest detainee, a founder of the Southern Street Movement, which calls for an end to one-party rule, was detained in the southern city of Guangzhou on suspicion of "picking quarrels and provoking troubles," his lawyers say.

The Guangzhou detainee is at least the 20th person detained ahead of the anniversary of the June 4, 1989, military attack on protesters, according to Amnesty International. Others have been put under house arrest or reported as missing. Communist leaders detain and harass activists every year ahead of June 4, but this year's efforts to suppress China's small number of active dissidents are unusually severe. In Beijing, human rights lawyer Pu Zhiqiang and four others were detained after they attended a private forum to commemorate the 1989 protest and its crackdown. (More China stories.)

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