Police in Hong Kong arrested four people and detained another four pending an investigation on the eve of the 34th anniversary of the Tiananmen Square protests and massacre in Beijing.
Police said in a release that four people were arrested for alleged “disorder in public spaces” or for acting “with seditious intention.” Another four people were taken to the police station for investigation on suspicion of “breaching public peace.”
The statement says authorities are “highly concerned about some people attempting to incite and provoke others to commit illegal acts that endanger national security, public order and public safety” and said authorities will continue monitoring and “intervene swiftly” against illegal acts.
The arrests come just ahead of the anniversary of the 1989 pro-democracy demonstrations in Tiananmen Square during which hundreds, possibly thousands, of people were killed.
China “sent tanks into Tiananmen Square to brutally repress peaceful Chinese pro-democracy protesters and bystanders alike,” the State Department said in a statement on the anniversary.
“The victims’ bravery will not be forgotten and continues to inspire advocates for these principles around the world,” the State Department continued.
Among those detained in Hong Kong were reportedly activists and artists.
Thousands have gathered in Hong Kong’s Victoria Park in prior years to mark the June 4 anniversary, though discussions of the tragedy have been limited in China and Hong Kong.
China reportedly tightened security on Sunday to Tiananmen Square, where an annual candlelight vigil has been previously held.
The Associated Press contributed.