National

China's silence on Tiananmen challenged

HONG KONG — Exiled student leaders, Hong Kong citizens and Taiwan's president on Friday challenged China's silence on the 21st anniversary of the 1989 Tiananmen Square crackdown with tributes outside the mainland — and on the Internet.

Tens of thousands of people held aloft white candles at a large park in the former British colony of Hong Kong, which enjoys freedom of speech as part of its special semiautonomous status. Democracy activists laid a wreath at a makeshift monument dedicated to the Tiananmen victims, bowing three times in line with traditional Chinese mourning customs.

In China, the government enforced its long-standing censorship of Tiananmen. On Friday in Beijing, the square was open but tightly guarded as tourists attended the early morning flag-raising ceremony and others flew kites above the massive space.

Van der Sloot handed over to Peru police

LIMA, Peru — The young Dutchman long suspected in a U.S. teen's Caribbean island disappearance was delivered to Peru on Friday to face charges in the murder of a 21-year-old woman found with her neck broken in his Lima hotel room.

Joran van der Sloot told police in Chile — where he was captured on Thursday — that he did not kill Stephany Flores but did say "he met her and at some point they went to a casino," said Fernando Ovalle, a Chilean police spokesman.

The girl's father, Ricardo Flores, told the Associated Press that video cameras tracked the couple as they walked before dawn Sunday to van der Sloot's hotel.

  Comments