12/17/2014, 00.00
CHINA
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China's anti-corruption campaign claims more victims

China Resources' vice-president Jiang Wei is in the spotlight for lending US$ 320 million to a businessman "friend". In Jiangxi, a former senior official gets life imprisonment for getting banks to lend him money to buy 248 properties. Hu Jintao aide pledges loyalty to Xi Jinping, as does the military.

Beijing (AsiaNews) - In a sign that Chinese President Xi Jinping's anti-corruption drive continues ruthlessly, China Resources' vice-president Jiang Wei has been placed under investigation for allegedly using his position to help a friend, businessman Zhang Xinming, who reciprocated with bribes and favours. Likewise, the PLA pledges its loyalty to the chief, whilst its daily paper writes, "Anti-graft drive will go on as China can't afford to lose corruption battle".

The Caixin Media Group reported this morning that Jiang had been investigated in relation to an alleged illegal loan of two-billion yuan (US$ 320 million) to Shanxi businessman Zhang Xinming for the acquisition of a coalmine. Shang was detained several months ago as part of the probe.

Likewise, Liu Jianjun, a former Jiangxi official received life in imprisonment after borrowing a total of 400 million yuan with which he built a small empire of 248 properties.

The former deputy head of Xingan County was considered close to Su Rong, former Jiangxi provincial governor and vice-chairman of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference, who was recently detained under investigation on suspicion of violating party rules and state laws.

The Party has also come down hard on the family of Ling Jihua, former top aide to Hu Jintao, Xi Jinping's predecessor.

Ling's son was at the centre of a scandal that lasted months after he was found dead at the wheel of his Ferrari on a Beijing road with two prostitutes. The following probe exposed the family's involvement in corruption.

Despite this, Ling came out in a show of loyalty to President Xi Jinping in a 4,000-word article published on Monday by the Communist Party's flagship journal Qiushi.

In it, Ling quotes Xi at least 16 times, and emphasises "the fundamental directions" given by the president to "fight and win" the battle against graft.

Similarly, a PLA Daily staff commentary on Wednesday said that President Xi Jinping's anti-corruption campaign was a "life-and-death battle" that the Communist Party could not "afford to lose".

According to some experts, this is a "clear political signal" that the anti-corruption campaign has touched the military's command structures and that the new military leaders back the party chief.

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