Tiananmen: China to deport Australian artist Guo Jian
- 6 June 2014
- From the section China
A China-born Australian artist detained before the Tiananmen anniversary is to be deported, Canberra has said.
Guo Jian, a former protester in China's 1989 pro-democracy movement, was taken away by police on Sunday after the Financial Times newspaper published an extensive interview with him.
The article showcased his sculpture of Tiananmen Square made from minced pork.
Australia's Department of Foreign Affairs said consular officials were allowed to visit Mr Guo in Beijing.
"Chinese authorities have advised that Mr Guo was detained on a visa-related matter," the department said in a statement.
"We understand Mr Guo will be detained for 15 days and will then required to depart China.''
China tightened security and widened a clampdown on dissent ahead of the 25th anniversary of the Tiananmen massacre.
The authorities began to round up and warn dissidents and activists weeks ago.
Lawyers, journalists and activists were also detained.
Internet search terms related to the 1989 massacre and the protests had also been blocked, and access on Google was reportedly restricted.
Authorities released three activists on Thursday who had been detained for attending a meeting to commemorate the Tiananmen protests.
Writers Liu Di and Hu Shigen, and research fellow Xu Youyu, were released on bail, their lawyers said.
All three activists had been detained for a month for "causing a disturbance". Two more activists from their group still remain in custody.
The protests were the biggest rally against Communist rule since the People's Republic was founded in 1949.
Hundreds of thousands called for democratic reforms in a peaceful demonstration largely focused on a gathering in Tiananmen Square.
After weeks of protests, the authorities responded on 4 June 1989 with a massacre of hundreds in the streets of Beijing.
Analysts say repression for the 25th anniversary of the protests is much more intense than in previous years.