China detains and beats mourners for Zhao Ziyang

Thursday, January 27, 2005

BEIJING, China — The People's Republic of China intensified security to prevent mourners attending funeral in Beijing for Zhao Ziyang. Mr. Zhao was the former Communist Party secretary general who was purged for opposing the 1989 military crackdown on the Tiananmen Square student movement. He died two weeks ago at age 85, having spent the last fifteen years of his life under house arrest. According to a story released by the Agence France-Presse anonymous witnesses said the government detained several people in Beijing. They claim some of these people were severely beaten.

A man who preferred to be anonymous said: "A man from Henan province was beaten badly. His left eyeball looked like it was beaten out of its socket and he had a one inch cut to his right eye. An elderly woman from Shandong province was beaten to a point where she couldn't move and a man from Hunan province was also beaten."

According to the witness the police argued Zhao was a political criminal. They said:"Why are you commemorating him? You're clearly opposing the government."

The government of China has already received criticism for what some feel to be intimidation of activists and other anti-democratic acts like censorship [1],

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