China's late paramount leader Deng Xiaoping (鄧小平) "resolutely backed" the Tiananmen Square Massacre 15 years ago, former premier Li Peng (李鵬) said in a rare commentary on the bloody incident he has long been blamed for. \nLi was premier when Chinese soldiers were ordered into Tiananmen Square in Beijing to quell a month-long rally by students demanding more democracy in communist China. He and Deng have been the target of blame for the resulting massacre on June 4 and June 5, 1989. \nBut in an article in the Communist Party magazine Seeking Truth cited widely by Hong Kong media yesterday, Li said it was Deng who made the decision to send in the troops. \n"In the spring and summer of 1989, a serious political disturbance took place in China," Li reportedly wrote. "Comrade Deng Xiaoping -- along with other party elders -- gave the party leadership their firm and full support to put down the political disturbance using forceful measures." \nLi's comments are among the most explicit made about the event, on which Chinese authorities maintain a strict gag. \nIt follows reports authorities had blocked his efforts to publish memoirs that sought to clear him from blame for the massacre. \nIn March, the Chinese-language magazine Yazhou Zhoukan claimed Li's nearly 300,000-word manuscript, entitled The Key Moment, detailed how important decisions at the time were not made by him as widely believed. But he was told it was inappropriate to publish the book for the time being. \nIn his article, Li also said Deng decided to ignore opposition in Hong Kong and push for the construction of the country's largest nuclear power plant at nearby Daya Bay on the coast of southern Guangdong Province. \nThe plan caused a stir in Hong Kong, where environmentalists were worried over possible radioactive leaks. \nLi, who became premier in 1988, also recalled how Deng advised him, then a timid apprentice, to deal with the daunting job. \n"Comrade Xiaoping said: What I am worried about is that you are not bold enough to carry out your work. You have to study hard and train yourself in work in order to make yourself more mature," Li was quoted as writing. \nOther former leaders also wrote articles for Seeking Truth to mark the centenary of Deng's birth this Sunday, but only Li referred directly to the Tiananmen Square Massacre.
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