We now know that Hu Yaobang first felt sick in the morning of April 8, 1989, during a politburo meeting. He was rushed into hospital that afternoon after emergency procedures were taken right at the meeting location.
But nobody in the pubic knew it back then. Information on the health of top leaders were, and still are, regarded as top secret. It was not until April 13, 1989, that Hu's condition was revealed. New York Times on that day had only a couple of short paragraphs, stating that Premier Li Peng disclosed that Hu Yaobang had been hospitablized for an undisclosed ailment.
Hu would pass away two days later, triggering the start of the great 1989 student movement.
But on that day, the big news regarding China on New York Times was a report of a group of Tibetans had finally made out of Tibet and reached Nepal. They were the first Tibetans to exit China after the Lhasa uprising and ensuring crackdown.
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