Thousands mourn Tiananmen 17th anniversary

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HONG KONG - Tens of thousands of people waved candles, chanted slogans and sang songs in Hong Kong on Sunday evening to remember the victims of the crackdown in and around Beijing’s Tiananmen Square 17 years ago.

“Reverse the verdict on June 4th. The people will not forget. Long live democracy,” chanted the crowd, which organizers estimated to be 44,000 strong but police put at about 19,000. Such gatherings have been held annually since 1989.

Hong Kong and the former Portuguese enclave of Macau are the only places in China where people are allowed to commemorate the hundreds, possibly thousands, killed when China’s Communist leaders sent tanks and infantry to crush the student-led protests that started in April 1989.

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