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China reaffirms Xi Jinping's power, removes No. 2

Xi is expected to be named as CPC general secretary on Sunday and in March 2023, begin his third term as President

China reaffirms Xi Jinpings power, removes No. 2

China on Saturday amended the Communist Party constitution to further cement leader Xi Jinping's status and, for the first time, enshrined its opposition to Taiwan's independence in the charter.

Xi is all set to begin a custom-breaking third term as China's leader on Sunday as he further strengthened his grip over the Communist Party of China (CPC) on Saturday through new amendments to the party charter and easing out top leaders including Premier Li Keqiang to make space for allies in the top leadership hierarchy.

Xi is expected to be named as CPC general secretary on Sunday and in March 2023, begin his third term as President.

The week-long 20th CPC national congress concluded on Saturday with 2,296 delegates electing a new 205-member Central Committee (CC).

The new CC did not include four current members of the CPC's seven-member Politburo Standing Committee (SC) including Li, who was number two after Xi, Wang Yang, once tipped to replace the Premier, Han Zheng, former Shanghai party chief, and Li Zhanshu who was the head of China's rubber stamp parliament, the National People's Congress. Li Keqiang will continue as Premier until March 2023 before making way for the new Premier at the end of China's annual NPC session.

A resolution to add "Two Establishes" and "Two Upholds" were unequivocally passed at the closing session of the CPC's 20th national congress at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, aimed at cementing Xi's core status in the party and to enhance the guiding role of his political thought.

The first "Two Establishes" mean: To establish Xi's status as the "core" of the CPC's Central Committee and of the whole party and to establish the "guiding role of Xi Jinping Thought on Socialism with Chinese Characteristics for the New Era". "Two Upholds" mean: Safeguarding the "core" status of Xi within the CPC and to safeguard the centralised authority of the CPC.

Together, the additions enhance Xi's stature as China's most powerful leader since Mao Zedong, founder of modern China in 1949.

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