A group of protesters marched to Beijing’s office in Hong Kong on Thursday to show solidarity with four men who were on trial for commemorating the 1989 Tiananmen Square crackdown.

In 2016, the Chinese government arrested Fu Hailu, Zhang Jinyong, Luo Fuyu and Chen Bing in connection with bottles of baijiu bearing the label “Ba Jiu Liu Si,” meaning eight nine six four – the date of the June 4 massacre. They were charged with “inciting subversion of state power” in July that year, but their trial only took place at the Chengdu Intermediate People’s Court this week.

june 4 baijiu activists Top: Fu Hailu and Luo Fuyu. Bottom: Zhang Jinyong and Chen Bing.
Top: Fu Hailu and Luo Fuyu. Bottom: Zhang Jinyong and Chen Bing.

Zhang and Luo were each handed a three-year prison term, suspended for four years. Fu received a three-year prison term, which was suspended for five years.

On Thursday, the last of the defendants Chen was given a three-and-a-half-year jail sentence with no suspension.

RFA reported that Chinese authorities amended the charges against Zhang and Fu to “picking quarrels and stirring up trouble,” a common charge deployed against activists and dissidents.

In Hong Kong, about two dozen supporters of the jailed activists held a protest march ending at the China Liaison Office in Sai Wan. The event was led by the Hong Kong Alliance in Support of Patriotic Democratic Movements of China (HK Alliance), a group that organises commemorative events for the Tiananmen massacre.

【聲明】銘記八九六四 與酒案四君子同罪2019年4月4日過去一連4日,拖了3年之久的六四酒案終於開庭,符海陸被判刑3年,緩刑5年,羅富譽、張雋勇被判刑3年,緩刑4年,而最後受審的陳兵,目前仍未有消息 **。這所謂的緩刑,是虛偽的寬大為懷;他們4人本就已經坐了近3年的牢,刑期都快坐完了才說不判實刑判緩刑,說白了即是要在已實際執行的3年實刑之上再加5年的軟禁。結果,因為一枝紀念「六四」的白酒,他們幾人便要付上7至8年不得自由的代價。整個案件的處理,亦反映出中國特色司法的荒謬:3年的羈押,從不允許親人探望,以致符海陸出獄後,孩子已經認不得他;家屬聘請的律師當局說炒就炒,律師完全無法和當事人溝通確認,庭審結束後才得知,獄中的他們其實拒絕委任官派律師,卻遭當局強行指派律師;辯方想要傳召自己的證人證據,全部被拒;4人明明牽涉同一事件,卻強行分案審理,讓不同當事人的家屬無法去聽其他人的審判,無法互相支持,削弱她們反抗的能力;所謂公開庭審,也全是做做樣子,不僅支持4君子的朋友無法進庭,連英、美、加拿大、瑞士等國的外交官到場後,都被攔在門外。所謂「陽光司法」,事實是見不得陽光的司法!羅富譽的妻子高燕於開庭前發文說:「一千多個日日夜夜,我們的家是破碎的,父母找不到兒子,女兒找不到父親,我也找不到丈夫。一萬多個日日夜夜,我們的國也是破碎的。在政府找不到公義,在民間找不到良心,在學校找不到師道,在醫院找不到憐憫。掩蓋了那段歷史,我們的國就破了三十年;為了紀念那份情結,我們的家就亡了三年。」是的,「六四」的真相一日被隱瞞,屠殺的青任一日未追究,國家永遠都是破碎的。不管當權者怎麼強調團結一統也沒有用,沒有公義的國度,無法阻止人心的離散。但相對地,當政府倒行逆施,就只能靠每一個普通人,用我們的良知和勇氣,去守護真相,捍衛公義。銘記八九六四,不應也不會只是酒案四君子的呼聲,而是靠每一個有良知的人。若然銘記是罪,就讓我們共同承擔這罪責,將「六四」的真相繼續傳承下去。我們並要求:1. 立即解除四君子的所有刑罰,停止以緩刑之名行軟禁之實;2. 對四君子的3年寃獄作出賠償;3. 允許家屬探望待審政治犯;4. 開放禁區,讓民眾自由討論及悼念「六四」;5. 徹查「六四」真相,追究屠殺責任。**更新:陳兵被判刑3年半,不獲緩刑。#六四酒案 #符海陸 #張雋勇 #羅富譽 #陳兵****【悼念「六四」無罪 ⽀持酒案 4 君⼦】⽇期:2019 年4⽉4⽇(星期四)時間:中午12時地點:⻄區警署集合,遊⾏到中聯辦https://www.facebook.com/177770798924026/posts/2371125842921833/直播中…Aisopdmoc Hong

Posted by 香港市民支援愛國民主運動聯合會 Hong Kong Alliance on Wednesday, 3 April 2019

The Tiananmen massacre ended months of student-led demonstrations in China. It is estimated that hundreds, perhaps thousands, of people died when the People’s Liberation Army was deployed to crack down on protesters in Beijing.

Trial ‘just a show’

“It is no crime to commemorate June 4th victims! It is no crime to demand accountability for the bloody crackdown!” the protesters chanted.

In a statement, the protesters said that the suspended sentences were not truly a gesture of mercy, because the men have already been detained for nearly three years before trial. They also noted that the men were cut off from outside contact during detention.

“The so-called open trial was just a show. Not only were the defendants’ friends unable to attend the trial, even foreign diplomatic representatives… were unable to get in,” said HK Alliance Vice-president Chow Hang-tung.

Protesters then stuck memos and posters onto the entrance of the China Liaison Office. Lee Cheuk-yan also appeared in a man-sized costume of the liquor bottle.

tiananmen baijiu
Baijiu bottles commemorating the Tiananmen massacre. Photo: Web.

Other attendees at the march included pro-democracy figures such as Albert Ho, “Long Hair” Leung Kwok-hung, Bull Tsang, Avery Ng and Raphael Wong.

On Wednesday, the Legislative Council voted down a non-binding motion urging for “the June 4 incident be not forgotten and the 1989 pro-democracy movement be vindicated.”

1989 Tiananmen massacre democracy movement protest
A protest on Wednesday outside the legislature. File photo: League of Social Democrats.

The June 4 motion has been raised every year by pro-democracy legislators since 1997, but has never been passed except in its first year.

The Hong Kong Free Press #PressForFreedom 2019 Funding Drive seeks to raise HK$1.2m to support our non-profit newsroom and dedicated team of multi-media, multi-lingual reporters.  HKFP is backed by readers, run by journalists and is immune to political and commercial pressure. This year’s critical fundraiser will provide us with the essential funds to continue our work into next year.

hong kong free press 2019 press for freedom funding drive footer (2)

Holmes Chan is a reporter at Hong Kong Free Press. He covers local news with a focus on law, politics, and social movements. He studied law and literature at the University of Hong Kong.