Tiananmen Square

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Tiananmen Square

Tiananmen Square is a large public square in Beijing, China. The square was named for its Gate of Heavenly Peace. It contains the monument of the heroes of the revolution, the museum of history and revolution, and the Great Hall of the People. However, in 1989, it became the opposite of heavenly peace.

Hu Yaobang served as General Secretary of the Communist Party of China from 1980 to 1987. As a reformist, he allowed students to have protests and because of this, he was forced out of office in 1987. Shortly after, he died of heart failure and the government did not arrange for him to have a funeral. When the students heard of this, they were outraged. The government then decided that they would have the funeral and hundreds of thousands of students showed up. Then, the students became even more outraged for two reasons. First, the government was still refusing their petition. Second, even though the government gave Yaobang a funeral, it wasn’t proper. This was the spark of the Tiananmen Square Massacre. After Yaobang’s funeral, China’s new general secretary, Zhao Ziyang, left to take a vacation to North Korea (eventually he becomes fired). While he was gone Li Peng took over. Some student representatives demanded to meet with Premier Li Peng, so they carried a petition to the steps of the Great Hall. They waited to speak with someone for three days. He did not respond and the students wanted him to pass it and not the officials, so they began boycotting classes. On April 26th, a communist party newspaper issued an editorial blaming some schemers with causing confusion in order to put an end to the Communist Party and the socialist system. The next day, students from more than 40 universities marched into Tiananmen in complaint of the editorial. On May 13, in the afternoon, several hundred students began a hunger strike at Tiananmen Square. On the sixth day of the hunger strike, Li Peng summoned a few student leaders for...
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