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U.S. Hails Tiananmen Square Protesters


A blood-covered protester holds a Chinese soldier's helmet following violent clashes with military forces during the 1989 pro-democracy demonstrations in Beijing's Tiananmen Square in this June 4, 1989, photo.
The United States has called on Chinese authorities to account for pro-democracy demonstrators who were killed, detained, or went missing during and after the protests in Tiananmen Square 25 years ago.

The Chinese government has never issued a formal accounting of the crackdown on June 3-4, 1989, when soldiers backed by tanks fought their way into the center city, killing hundreds of unarmed protesters and onlookers.

In a statement on June 4, press secretary Jay Carney said the United States "will always speak out in support of the basic freedoms the protesters at Tiananmen Square sought."

Carney praised China for "extraordinary social and economic progress" over the last three decades but urged Beijing to guarantee "universal rights and fundamental freedoms" to all of its citizens.

Security is reported to be tight in Beijing on the annniversary.

Based on reporting by AP and AFP