Following the death of Hu Yaobang, a leader who supported political reforms in China, some 100,000 students marched on Tiananmen Square in Beijing, leading to the Tiananmen Square protests of 1989.
Referred to in much of the world as the Tiananmen Square massacre, the pro-democracy protests were brutally cracked down on the night of June 3, 1989.
According to intelligence reports, an estimated 3,000 protesters were killed in the army crackdown, followed by widespread arrests, a ban on foreign media and a strictly controlled coverage of the events in the national press.
These photographs were amongst the first to be published in the western world and give the lie to government claims that no one was killed in Tiananmen Square.
To this day, little is known in China of the 1989 events.