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    » 09/28/2012, 00.00

    CHINA

    Party expels Bo Xilai, announces congress date

    Chen Weijun

    Bo's "actions created grave repercussions, and massively damaged the reputation of the party and the state," Xinhua reports. Forensic scientist casts doubts on the official version of British businessman's death. Party congress set for 8 November.

    Beijing (AsiaNews) - Bo Xilai, former Chongqing party chief, has been expelled from the Communist Party of China (CPC) over kickbacks and his links to the murder of British businessman Neil Heywood, which led to the conviction of his wife and of his former right hand man. The party also decided to refer his case to the proper legal authorities for trial.

    The official Xinhua news agency published the party's statement. Bo, the latter said, "abused his powers of office, committed serious errors and bears a major responsibility". His "actions created grave repercussions, and massively damaged the reputation of the party and the state".

    Through s combination of populism, statism and Maoist revival, Bo was rising to the top of the party's echelon, and was expected to join the Central Committee of the Politburo.

    When Bo's wife, Gu Kailai, had British businessman poisoned, there was a falling out with his right hand man, Chongqing Public Security Bureau (PSB) Chief Wang Lijun.

    According to Xinhua's report on the murder, Wang first tried to cover up the murder; then confronted Bo with it, who rebuked and slapped him.

    Fearing for his life, Wang fled to Chengdu, asking for asylum at the US Consulate, where he revealed what had happened.

    At this point, China's leaders could not pull back. Wang and Gu Kailai were taken into custody and Bo was forced to resign, revealing one of the worst scandals of the past 30 years.

    Bo Xilai's name was never mentioned during the trials involving Gu and Wang (and four accomplices, all police officers), who were respectively sentenced to death (suspended) for the murder and 15 years in prison for the cover-up. Only during Wang Lijun's trial was Bo indirectly cited as the former Chongqing party chief.

    Complicating matters, a Chinese forensic scientist has cast doubt on the official version of the death of the British businessman, especially the use of cyanide. She said that no evidence of poisoning was presented, nor was the autopsy report made public. From what was said, she concluded that the body did not show any sign of cyanide poisoning.

    Many people in China believe that Bo was the victim of a plot designed to remove him and his supporters from Chinese politics.

    "Bo did a lot of good things," a source told AsiaNews, "including doggedly going after organised crime syndicates in Chongqing. Did he make some mistakes? Who hasn't? I think they set him up."

    In an editorial, Xinhua dismissed such allegations, calling them nonsense, insisting that the party is putting its house in order.

    Meanwhile, after months of waiting, the Communist Party announced the date of its 18th congress, set to start on 8 November.

    If everything goes according to script, the party's 'fifth generation' should take over with Xi Jinping replacing Hu Jintao and Li Keqiang doing the same for Wen Jiabao.

    A turnover in personnel is also expected when the People's National Congress meets in March 2013.

    Thus, the party will be able to continue its rule.

     

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    See also

    11/08/2012 CHINA
    Chongqing Saga: Bo Xilai’s wife accepts murder charges
    The news was broadcast by Chinese state media. Only press allowed access to Gu Kailai’s trial last August 9. The woman justified the murder of Neil Heywood with a mental breakdown due to the threats to her son. Suspicions about a deal between Bo and the leaders in Beijing to prevent further scandals. Experts maintain Chongqing leader’s wife is following a script drawn up by Chinese Communist Party.

    10/08/2012 CHINA
    Chongqing saga: police and Wang Lijun on trial. Silence on Bo Xilai
    Four officers are accused of helping Bo Xilai’s wife to conceal the murder of Heywood. Gu Kailai poisoned the British recruiter after making him drunk. The verdict is expected in these days. The woman, who did not contest the allegations and cooperated, will receive a soft sentence. In a few days the trial of Wang Lijun, Bo Xilai’s former right hand man, for "treason". Under no circumstances, is name of the former Party secretary of Chongqing mentioned. Leadership fears uncovering of the corrupt world of the "princes" and the Party, before the autumn Congress.

    09/08/2012 CHINA
    “Trial of the century" begins (and ends) against Gu Kailai
    The trial is reminiscent of the one against Mao's wife, head of the Gang of Four. Media denied court access. Accused only permitted court appointed defense lawyers, who have not yet met with their clients. The many oddities indicate that the sentence has already been written and it's all in favor of the Communist Party. The trial will be brief because the leadership want to forget this story and prepare for the Congress this autumn.

    18/07/2012 CAMBODIA - CHINA
    French architect linked to Bo Xilai in China to testify in trial against former Chongqing party boss
    Cambodia detained Patrick Henri Devillers on 13 June at Beijing's request. He apparently chose to testify in the trial against Bo and his wife Gu Kailai. Devillers and Neil Heywood, a British businessman killed in Chongqing in November 2011, were closely connected.

    28/09/2012 CHINA
    Bo Xilai is the quintessence of a Chinese Communist
    The former Chongqing party chief has been expelled from the party after nine months of turmoil. By distancing itself from him, the party can blame him for deviating from its ideals. In fact, corruption, violence, disregard for human rights and mass manipulation are the essence of the Chinese Communist party. The problem is that the party's dictatorship is never questioned. Without the abolition of its monopoly on power, more Bo Xilais will appear. Here are Bao Tong's thoughts on the matter.



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