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China Intensified Internet Blockade during June 4 Period

On April 15, 1989, former Chinese Communist Party (CCP) leader Hu Yaobang died. Hu had worked to move China toward a more open political system and had become a symbol of democratic reform. By April 18, thousands of students had come to Tiananmen Square to mourn his passing. As more arrived, protests against corruption and for greater democracy ensued. The numbers grew; it is estimated that as many as one million Chinese, mostly students, came to Tiananmen. On June 4, 1989, the CCP used tanks and guns to crack down on the democracy demonstration. This event became known as the Tiananmen Massacre. Since then, every year during the June 4 anniversary, the CCP has been on alert and has taken extreme measures to prevent any form of protest.

According to Radio Free Asia (RFA), this year the CCP intensified its Internet blockade. Many Wechat accounts and even Facebook accounts were blocked. (Wechat is the most popular social media network phone application among Chinese). VPN software that people used to bypass the Internet blockade couldn’t connect to the Internet overseas either.

A netizen Zhu Xueqin said that she posted a video of pigs with a comment on Facebook:  “It is a grief to be a pig in China, but it is a greater grief to be a Chinese.” She was referring to a report that many pork producers fed pigs with chemicals to shorten the pig’s growth period from a year to only a few months. Her Facebook account was blocked.

Source: RFA, May 31, 2017