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Chaos reigns as CCP meets in Beijing
Epoch Times
10/1/2003

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BEIJING - The Third Plenary Session of the Sixteenth Central Committee is about to start in an environment where political reform and ongoing social turmoil are hot issues. Can the Party make the necessary changes whilst corrupt officials hold influential and powerful positions?

Recent controversies arose from the attempted and successful self-immolation incidents following unsuccessful attempts at seeking legal redress for forceful evictions or inadequate compensation. These extreme protests have even occurred in Tiananmen Square, catching the attention of the nation.

Bombings, both real and threatened and previously a rarity have now become a far more common means of registering extreme dissatisfaction.

On July 17, a young man in Hanshou County, Hunan Province broke into a middle school with bombs tied to his body, taking a teacher and his wife as hostage. Fortunately, local police arrived on time and resolved the crisis.

On August 4, a KFC restaurant in Haikou City, Hainan Province received bomb threats, but three hours of searching returned no results.

On August 7, a suspicious package was found in a Xinhua bookshop in downtown Xian City. Military police arrived and demolished the packages.

On September 1, police defused two explosive devices in the morning and afternoon in a restaurant located in the prosperous downtown area of Qiqihar City, Heilongjiang Province. No one was hurt. One of the devices was placed on a natural gas pipe.

Before September 4, eight fake and real bombing incidents took place in the same restaurant, one of the bombs exploded and one police officer was injured.

On September 11, the second anniversary of the 9.11 terrorist attack in the US, a bomb exploded in a Shenzhen City supermarket deposit box injuring four people. The fleeing customers looted the supermarket

On September 21, a man in Yichang City, Hubei Province started a fire in the company dormitory and then threw bombs at paramedics, police, and fire fighters who came to the scene, which resulted in four deaths and injuring 23 people. On the same day, there were four bombings in Chengdu, another in Baoji District caused three deaths and five injuries and another in a supermarket in Wuhan City caused three injuries. Some of these bombings were caused by bickering; some suspects had grudges against their supervisors and some involved criminal elements.

These are only the bombings where news of them has been published in newspapers.

Another two bombings that took place in Beijing went unreported. One cut off some electricity supplies and another one caused flight delays at Beijing Airport.

However, despite the turmoil in the country, the high-level Party officials are too busy fighting for their own power. Jiang Zemin and Hu Jintao are at odds and their power-plays are affecting the country. The United Nations recently discussed anti-terrorism and the war in Iraq and many heads of state were present. Yet China, always a proponent of “large country diplomacy” and a permanent member of the Security Council, was not represented by its head of state because he had to head off interference from Jiang Zemin.

Ever vigilant of chatter on the Internet, Beijing is busy shutting down Internet websites.

On September 9, Beijing ordered four websites to be shut down. They are caosy.com, libertas2000.net, xianzheng.net and cc-forum.com. These websites allowed people to publish articles on political reform; a topic considered taboo by the authorities. One of them is associated with Cao Siyuan and another two are associated with Liu Junning. The Party did this for two reasons: it regards such discussions as a threat to its power, and discussion about political reform will intensify power struggles among the political elites. However, this measure will only exacerbate social conflicts, drive the debate underground, and building up pressure before it explodes.


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