Sunday, 04 Dec 2022

Chinas leader Xi Jinping secures third term and stacks inner circle with loyalists

Chinas leader Xi Jinping secures third term and stacks inner circle with loyalists


Chinas leader Xi Jinping secures third term and stacks inner circle with loyalists

Xi Jinping has been confirmed as leader of China for a precedent-breaking third term, after a week-long political meeting eliminated key rivals and strengthened his political power.

The 20th Party Congress, the most important meeting of the ruling Chinese Communist party five-year political cycle, saw about 2,400 delegates gather in Beijing to rubber-stamp major reshuffles and constitutional changes before its official close on Saturday.

At a press event on Sunday, seven key Xi loyalists were revealed as members of China's most powerful political body, the politburo standing committee (PSC), as they walked on stage in order of rank.

"I was reelected as the general secretary of the CPC central committee," Xi said in opening remarks, before presenting the six other members: Li Qiang, Zhao Leji, Wang Huning, Cai Qi, Ding Xuexiang, and Li Xi.

At the lead was Xi, confirming his reappointment as general secretary of the party for a third term. The long-speculated reappointment signalled Xi's successful and overwhelming consolidation of power in Beijing, with retention of the role as chair of the military commission, controlling the People's Liberation Army. It's expected he will next year regain the less powerful title of president.

Among the first world leaders to congratulate Xi were North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un, and Russia's Vladimir Putin, with whom Xi announced a limitless partnership earlier this year.

"The results of the Party Congress fully confirm your high political authority, as well as the unity of the party you lead," Putin said, according to the Kremlin.

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