Xi Jinping has been confirmed as China’s leader for a record-breaking third term, after a week-long meeting that saw key rivals eliminated and his political power strengthened.
About 2,400 people gathered in Beijing for the 20th Party Congress, which was the most important meeting of China’s Communist Party (CCP) five-year political cycle.
Xi is now set to win a third term in China’s presidency. This will be formally announced at the March 2019 government legislative sessions.
The CCP also named a Politburo Standing Committee (PSC) of seven-members, led by Xi. This inner circle of power is now dominated by the party leaders’ allies.
“I was reelected general secretary of CPC central committee,” Xi stated in his opening remarks. He then presented the six remaining members: Li Qiang, Zhao Leji, Wang Huning, Cai Qi, Ding Xuexiang, and Li Xi.
“I want to thank the entire party sincerely for your trust in me,” Xi stated after his appointment and promised to “work diligently to fulfill our duties to earn the great trust of our people and our party”.
The new PSC members are believed to be close to the 69-year-old Xi, who was also appointed chairman of the Central Military Commission.
The first congratulations from world leaders came from expected quarters, North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un, and Russian President Vladimir Putin among the earliest to send their well wishes to Xi.