P.M. BRIEFING : Beijing Protest: Cash With a Catch

<i> From Times wire services</i>

Money is pouring in for pro-democracy Chinese students, but the protesters face problems in converting foreign currency offered by overseas supporters.

Chinese citizens, whose monthly income averages $54 in cities, have contributed over $270,000 to students camped out at Tian An Men Square since May 13, student leader Feng Congde said today.

Another $3.3 million is sitting in the British colony of Hong Kong as supporters there try to figure a way to hand over the money without incurring the wrath of Chinese authorities.

Many overseas Chinese students have written to ask for a bank account number to transfer money to, student leaders said.


“We can’t open a bank account because we fear the money would be confiscated and some of us may be arrested,” said Feng, a member of the main student “standing committee” on the square who oversees finance and supplies.