China's President Xi Jinping in Tiananmen Square, Beijing, on the first Martyrs' Day holiday on September 30 (photo: dpa)

Charismatic Chinese leader’s political reforms could simply be a purge

Xi Jinping’s anti-corruption drive has involved hundreds of thousands of arrests at all levels of power, civilian and military. Corrupt officials are the second biggest concern for the Chinese, after inflation, so his move appears to be partly to increase his support, particularly in view of looming economic problems. Doubts remain as to whether Mr Xi’s campaign is a genuine effort at lasting reform, or simply a purge of political rivals, writes GIS guest expert Brendan O'Reilly.

XI JINPING, who came to power in late 2012, has proved to be the most charismatic and transformative Chinese leader since Deng ...

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 Brendan O’Reilly
Intractable questions remain regarding the president’s motives and strategy. There is a significant potential for both serious political instability and meaningful evolutionary reform
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