INTRODUCTION: The first anniversary of Chinese Premier Chou En-lai's death has brought huge crowds into the streets of Peking demanding the death of Mao Tse-tung's widow, Chiang Ching, and three other purged radical leaders.
INTRODUCTION: The first anniversary of Chinese Premier Chou En-lai's death has brought huge crowds into the streets of Peking demanding the death of Mao Tse-tung's widow, Chiang Ching, and three other purged radical leaders. The anniversary also turned into a demonstration of public support for the former vice-premier Teng Hsiao-ping, who was ??? in a radical inspired campaign last year.
SYNOPSIS: In the Square of Heavenly Peace, thousands swarmed around bright paper wreaths and wall posters. Long columns marched across the square bearing Chou En-lai's portraits and black banners reading "The crimes of the gang of four in madly persecuting Premier Chou deserve ten thousand deaths.
The posters accused the radicals of having opposed the popular Chou during the final years of his life when he was battling cancer. Sobbing groups took oaths of allegiance to him and sang the Internationale.
A slogan demanding the death sentence for former vice-premier, Chang Chun-Chien, one of the four purged radical leaders, has appeared for the first time in the centre of Peking.
There have also been wall posters demanding openly, for the first time, the rehabilitation of vice-premier Teng Hsiao-ping, once the most powerful man in China after Chairman Mao Tse-tung. Hundreds of people gathered in Tien An Men square to read that "Teng Hsiao-ping is a very good comrade". The posters demanded that Man's successor, Chairman Hua Kuo-feng, makes arrangements for Teng to work again. Effigies of Mao's widow and the other three radicals dangled from a nearby tree.
There have been signs of debate about the punishment for the "gang of four", who were arrested in October, but correspondents quoted by Reuters news agency seriously doubt that the death sentence would be passed.