State media explains why China's Hu Jintao escorted out of party congress

Published on Oct 22, 2022 08:58 PM IST

At the end of the week-long gathering in Beijing, China's ruling party approved a sweeping reshuffle that saw a number of top officials - including Premier Li Keqiang - step down, allowing President Xi Jinping to appoint new allies.

Former Chinese president Hu Jintao, center, is escorted out of the closing ceremony of a congress of the ruling Communist Party on Saturday.(AP)
Former Chinese president Hu Jintao, center, is escorted out of the closing ceremony of a congress of the ruling Communist Party on Saturday.(AP)
By | Edited by Aniruddha Dhar, New Delhi

After China's former president Hu Jintao was unexpectedly escorted out of the closing ceremony of a congress of the ruling Communist Party on Saturday, that stole the headlines, state media said he was "not feeling well" when he was removed.

"Xinhuanet reporter Liu Jiawen has learned that Hu Jintao insisted on attending the closing session... despite the fact that he has been taking time to recuperate recently," Xinhua said on Twitter.

"When he was not feeling well during the session, his staff, for his health, accompanied him to a room next to the meeting venue for a rest. Now, he is much better," it added.

At the end of the week-long gathering in Beijing, China's ruling party approved a sweeping reshuffle that saw a number of top officials - including Premier Li Keqiang - step down, allowing President Xi Jinping to appoint new allies.

However, in an unexpected move that punctured the proceedings at the Great Hall of the People, former leader Hu Jintao was led out of the closing ceremony.

In a video, which has gone viral on social media, the frail-looking 79-year-old seemed reluctant to leave the front row where he was sitting next to Xi.

Xi is now all but certain to be unveiled as general secretary on Sunday, shortly after the first meeting of the new Central Committee.

This will allow Xi to sail through to a third term as China's president, due to be announced during the government's annual legislative sessions in March.

(With inputs from AFP)

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