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PacNet #29 – Jiang Zemin’s Succession and the Ghost of Yuan Shikai

The early reactions to the chorus of reports over the past month, backed by private confirmations from Chinese Party specialists in Beijing, that Jiang Zemin is maneuvering to stay on as chairman or general secretary of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) are starting to come in and they are not pretty. What the Chinese leadership ultimately decides on leadership succession may not be known for months, especially if the 16th Party Congress is delayed to deal with leadership controversies, but the implications of Jiang’s retaining top party positions are already having an effect.