Speculation over China’s ‘missing’ premier elect

Where is China’s president-in-waiting, Xi Jinping?

Chinese micro-bloggers and overseas websites have speculated as to why the vice president has gone unseen for more than a week. Xi has cancelled meetings with visiting foreign dignitaries, including US secretary of state Hillary Clinton and Singapore premier Lee Hsien Loong. Yesterday, it was the Danish prime minister’s turn.

Most online speculation about Xi, 59, has centred on a back problem, possibly incurred when he took a dip last week in the swimming pool inside the Zhongnanhai compound.

More dramatically, US website Boxun.com cited an unidentified source as saying Xi was injured in a staged traffic accident that was part of a revenge plot by ousted local Communist Party boss Bo Xilai’s supporters in the security forces.

The tension and the uncertainty are heightened by the timing ahead of a generational shift to a new leadership that is to be headed by Xi.

Xi is expected to become the Communist leader at a party congress held once every five years.

Yet the dates for the meeting, expected in the second half of October, have yet to be announced, prompting talk that at least some of the seats on the nine-member Standing Committee remain up for grabs. Recent economic challenges have also added to the sense of insecurity.

© Irish Examiner Ltd. All rights reserved

More in this Section

World at war but it is not a war of religions, says Pope Francis

Hillary Clinton: ‘We’ve cracked the glass ceiling’

Woman ends 16-year hunger strike to run in India elections

Murder accused ‘unaware’ victim was dead despite being 'cuddled up to her'


Breaking Stories

UK Airport alcohol sales to be reviewed after spate of plane incidents

Tesco to offer free fruit to children while parents shop

You couldn't trust Trump with nuclear weapons, says Hillary Clinton

Francis becomes third Pope to visit Auschwitz

Lifestyle

'Give Peas a Chance' competition involves raising food plants at your work desk

The Kooks are making the best of an era where people don't buy music

Ask Audrey has been sorting out Cork people for years

There will always be a need for the LGBT community to bare its soul on Pride day

More From The Irish Examiner