Never-before-seen video footage of bloody Tiananmen crackdown surfaces after 30 years


Tanya Ong| June 01, 06:00 PM

The Tiananmen Square protests took place 30 years ago, on June 4, 1989.

Footage shared by Canadian journalist

The Tiananmen Square protests were a series of peaceful student-led demonstrations that culminated in a violent crackdown by the People's Liberation Army.

Recently, never-before-seen footage of the incident surfaced after Canadian journalist Arthur Kent shared newly-restored video footage that he shot that night.

The video "Black Night in June", which is nearly 13 minutes long, has been shared on Kent's website and uploaded to YouTube.

The footage has been given proper treatment in terms of length, sequential storytelling and translation, according to Hong Kong Free Press (HKFP).

Kent was sent to cover the incident as a freelance journalist

HKFP reported that Kent was working as a freelance journalist at that time, and was sent to cover the movement in Beijing.

The video shows what Kent captured that night with the two batteries and two cassettes that he was carrying with him.

Gun shots can be heard in the video, which Kent claimed were from the military firing live rounds at the protesters.

Screenshot via YouTube video.

Screenshot via YouTube video.

Kent described how the crowd responded with defiance, and started creating barricades and hurling objects at the soldiers.

Screenshot via YouTube video.

Screenshot via YouTube video.

Screenshot via YouTube video.

Apparently, one soldier tried to surrender, but was swarmed by the protesters.

In the video, the military can be heard using loudhailers saying in Mandarin:

"We cannot protect you if you are in the square. You must take responsibility for the consequences."

The military also referred to the protesters as "ruffians" who set things on fire.

Screenshot via YouTube video.

The injured were also captured on tape.

Protesters carrying the injured. Screenshot via YouTube video.

Some of the students who were medically trained tried to give assistance to those injured despite the sounds of approaching gunfire.

Screenshot via YouTube video.

Screenshot via YouTube video.

Student trying to resuscitate injured protester. Screenshot via YouTube video.

Kent described that many students refused to leave the square, and stayed behind at the Monument to the People's Heroes. He added that their fate remained unclear.

Screenshot via YouTube video.

According to Epoch Times, Kent left the square at around 4am, and reportedly had to evade groups of policemen in plain clothes, who chased him after seeing his camera.

Subsequently, the tapes had to be hand-carried to Hong Kong and Tokyo to be broadcasted.

The full YouTube video is here:


Top photo via screenshot from YouTube video.


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