In April 1989, Chinese students began protesting on Beijing's Tiananmen Square to demand democratic reforms and an end to corruption. The rallies, sparked by the death of reformist Communist Party chief Hu Yaobang, quickly grew into mass pro-democracy demonstrations. On June 4, 1989, the Chinese military launched a violent crackdown against the protesters. The government has never released an official death toll, but estimates range from the hundreds to the thousands. Today, the Chinese government forbids any discussion in the media of the events of 1989.