Xi elected new Party leader

New Communist Party General Secretary Xi Jinping waves in Beijing's Great Hall of the People Thursday, November 15. Photo: AP

Xi Jinping became China's new leader Thursday, assuming the top posts in the Communist Party and the military in a political transition unbowed by a slower economy and public demands for reforms.

Xi was appointed general secretary of the Central Committee of the CPC and chairman of CPC Central Military Commission as the Party unveiled a new leadership lineup consisting of respected financial reformers.

Xi's colleagues in the new Standing Committee are Li Keqiang, the premier and chief economic official; Vice Premier Zhang Dejiang; Shanghai party secretary Yu Zhengsheng; publicity chief Liu Yunshan; Vice Premier Wang Qishan; and Tianjin party secretary Zhang Gaoli.

Wang Qishan, 64, currently in charge of economic affairs, will take over the graft-fighting role.

In a speech broadcast live on Chinese state TV and worldwide, Xi said, "We shall do everything we can to live up to your trust and fulfill our mission.”

Xi said he understood the people's desire for a better life but warned of severe challenges going forward. "Our party is dedicated to serving the people," he said after introducing the other six members of the standing committee at the Great Hall of the People.

"It has led the people in making world-renowned achievements, and we have every reason to take pride in these achievements," he added.

" But we are not complacent, and we will never rest on our laurels. Under the new conditions, our party faces many severe challenges, and there are also many pressing problems within the party that need to be resolved, particularly corruption, being divorced from the people, going through formalities and bureaucratism caused by some party officials."

XiCXXXii X wewwwXXXXi will lead the world's No. 2 economy and newest diplomatic and military power amid increasingly vocal calls for economic and political reform — including from within the 82-million-member party itself.

"To address these problems, we must first of all conduct ourselves honorably. Our responsibility is to work with all the comrades in the Party to uphold the principle that the Party should supervise its own conduct and run itself with strict discipline, effectively solve major problems in the Party, improve our conduct, and maintain close ties with the people," he said.

"By doing so, we will ensure that our Party will remain at the core of leadership in advancing the cause of socialism with Chinese characteristics," Xi said. "It is the people who have created history, and it is the people who are true heroes. The people are the source of our strength," Xi said.

"Just as China needs to learn more about the world, so does the world need to learn more about China," Xi concluded, hoping that the press continue to deepen mutual understanding between China and the world.


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