China’s Communist Party to wrap up key meeting as Xi strengthens power
China’s Communist Party will wrap up a meeting on Thursday that is set to culminate with a resolution that consolidates President Xi Jinping‘s authority, a year before he is expected to secure a precedent-breaking third term as party leader.
The sixth plenum of the central committee, a group of some 370 party members that chooses its new leaders every five years, has been meeting since Monday behind closed doors in Beijing, accompanied by a drumbeat of state media propaganda.
The “historical resolution”, only the party’s third since its founding in 1921, is officially about its achievements over 100 years but will also uphold the authority of Xi as the party’s “core”, further reinforcing his grip on power and laying the ground for what analysts widely expect to be a third term a year from now.
While there has been no official media coverage of the plenum’s discussions, state news outlets have been filled with celebrations of the achievements of Xi and the party.
The People’s Daily has run a series of lengthy front-page commentaries saluting Xi every day since Nov. 1.
The first hailed Xi as a “Marxist politician, thinker, strategist” who has “immense political courage, intense sense of historical accountability and deep love of the people”, embodying the party’s quality of “not fearing a strong enemy, not fearing risks” and “daring to fight and win”.
Sprinkled with comments from Xi and admirers, the People’s Daily commentaries cumulatively run to more than 140,000 characters, lauding Xi for controlling COVID-19, strengthening the economy and military, eradicating poverty and fighting corruption.
The only two previous such party “historical resolutions”, in 1945 and 1981, had the effect of consolidating the authority of leaders Mao Zedong and Deng Xiaoping, respectively.
The first news about this week’s meeting is likely to be in state media on Thursday, and a news conference is scheduled for Friday.
Author: Yew Lun Tian, Reuters