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China: Xi Jinping wins third term and secures full powers

Xi Jinping becomes the most powerful Chinese leader since Mao Tse-tung, founder of the regime.

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China: Xi Jinping wins third term and secures full powers

Xi Jinping becomes the most powerful Chinese leader since Mao Tse-tung, founder of the regime. The president was renewed, this Sunday, October 22, at the head of the Communist Party (PCC). Beijing strongman vowed to 'work hard' in fulfilling his 'tasks' immediately after heavily reshuffled Central Committee secured third five-year term at 20th Party Congress Chinese Communist (CCP).

At the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, Xi Jinping, who has presided over China for ten years, arrived this Sunday at the platform surmounted by the hammer and sickle, followed by the six other men appointed to the summit of Chinese power - all relatives and allies. Xi Jinping "sincerely thanked the whole Party for the trust placed in us", the new leadership team. "China cannot develop without the world and the world also needs China", then told the press the leader, also reappointed to command of the Chinese army.

In a decade at the head of the country, Xi Jinping has succeeded in making China the second largest economy in the world, with one of the most powerful armies in the world. "We have created two miracles: rapid economic development and long-term social stability," he said. Despite an almost total concentration of power, Xi Jinping will however have to deal with a sharply slowing economy, in particular due to his "zero Covid" policy, an exacerbated rivalry with the United States and international criticism of human rights. . "Economic growth is important, of course, but in the eyes of the current leader, the most important thing is to strengthen the existing ideological and political framework, that takes precedence over the rest", explained to L'Express the sinologist Alice Ekman , October 16.

By obtaining a third term as secretary general of the party, Xi Jinping secures a third presidential term next March. To stay in power, he amended the Constitution in 2018 which limited this position to two terms and a total duration of 10 years. "Xi Jinping's reappointment is the result of an extreme concentration of his personal power," a Chinese political scientist told AFP, on condition of anonymity. And there is "no doubt" that Xi Jinping is now seeking to stay in power for life. This decision is "catastrophic for China" and harms the Communist Party, believes this intellectual, because it announces according to him "the decline and stagnation" of the second world economy.

Now held by its closest allies, the new Standing Committee confirms Xi Jinping's stranglehold on political training, according to analysts. "They are all Xi's men, it shows that he wants to govern beyond a third term", so after 2027, underlines Alfred Wu Muluan, expert in Chinese politics at the National University of Singapore. Far from its homogeneous appearance, the CCP is internally divided and several rival currents coexist, believe sinologists.

Until now, compromises existed for the distribution of posts, of which Xi Jinping is an illustrious example. Failing to agree on their respective candidate, the various factions of the CCP finally placed a consensus candidate in power in 2012. But the Chinese president then surprised everyone by eliminating his rivals to gradually concentrate all powers. at the head of the party and the country, while carrying out a severe repression against all dissent. The Politburo, the decision-making body of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), has no women for the first time in 25 years, according to its new composition unveiled on Sunday.

At the end of its congress, the CCP reaffirmed, on Saturday, the "central role" of Xi Jinping. The only significant incident during a highly choreographed ceremony, former President Hu Jintao was escorted out, AFP journalists noted. Visibly against his will, the 79-year-old, who served as China's president from 2003 to 2013, was pressured by employees to get up from his seat next to Xi Jinping. This very unusual scene was not explained by the authorities, who did not respond to requests from AFP.

The New China Agency said in English that Hu Jintao "did not feel well". He is "much better" now, she wrote on Twitter, a social network blocked in China. Hu Jintao, who appeared physically weakened during the congress, is Xi Jinping's predecessor and is considered a reformer. Any recent reference to his name appeared to have been censored from the Chinese internet.

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