China. During the year, the communist regime invested considerable resources in combating what has been identified as two major social dangers: corruption and difficult-to-control popular movements such as the Falun Gong meditation movement. At the National People’s Congress in Beijing in March, Prime Minister Zhu Rongji ruled that all corrupt representatives of state or party should be severely punished regardless of position.
A number of notable judgments emphasized this. In March, Jiangxi Province’s former deputy governor Hu Changqing was executed for bribery, and six months later one of the country’s best-known businessmen, Mou Qizhong, was sentenced to life in prison for fraud. In September, Cheng Kejie, former Vice-President of the National Congress, became K’s highest communist leader to date. He had been sentenced to death for receiving the equivalent of close to SEK 50 million. in bribery. At about the same time, a series of trials in the southern province of Fujian were launched in a giant smuggling scandal. Policemen, customs officials and party representatives were said to have received multi-billion amounts from the corporate group YuanHua, based in Hong Kong, for years having closed their eyes on smuggling of cars, luxury goods, tobacco, fuel, etc.
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In November, 14 of the defendants were sentenced to death, while 70 others were jailed for between three years and a life sentence. Shortly before the end of the year, it was also announced that Justice Minister Gao Changli had been replaced. The government’s official statement was for health reasons, but according to foreign press reports, Gao had been fired for misusing public funds in connection with an extramarital affair.
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The Falun Gong movement, labeled as illegal, continued to challenge with peaceful but fiercely opposed recurring mass protests. Faced with astonished tourists, police seized hundreds, perhaps a thousand, of the movement’s supporters as they demonstrated on National Day October 1 at Tiananmen Square in Beijing. Representatives of Falun Gong claimed during the year that several thousand practitioners had been thrown into labor camps without trial and that at least about 50 died in police custody. The authorities said they had imprisoned about 150 leaders for the movement.
The outside world’s criticism of China for oppression of dissimilar thinking and increasingly tough attempts to regulate, for example. The Internet existed. In November, when UN Commissioner Mary Robinson visited Beijing, the UN and China signed a first formal agreement on cooperation in the field of human rights. The agreement is about training of police officers and lawyers. However, the UN treaties that China wrote in 1997-98 on citizens’ economic, social, cultural, civil and political rights remained unreturned by the National Congress.
Following the spring regime change in Taiwan, China maintained that independence for the island can never be accepted, rejected proposals for a summit and ruled that all negotiations must be based on the “China” principle. In December, however, the two governments took a first step toward limited but direct trade, transport and postal contacts between Taiwan and mainland Fujian province.
A major foreign and trade policy breakthrough after 14 years of struggle noted the Beijing government when China and the EU in May signed an agreement that opens for Chinese entry into the World Trade Organization. Four months later, the US Senate granted Beijing so-called permanent normal trade relations, which ultimately gave US a clear sign for K’s WTO membership.
At the September election in Hong Kong, the Democratic Party, led by Martin Lee and criticized China, remained the largest single party in the regional parliament, but the Beijing-friendly forces continued to dominate the assembly. Turnout was low, 43%.
1966-69 The Cultural Revolution
But this five-year plan was never implemented. In 1966, Mao went to counter-attack. Soldiers and students entered the “Red Guard” and armed with a book of quotes by Mao – “Mao’s Little Red” – they launched a campaign across China where the public servants and university teachers were accused of being “capitalist tenants”. The Great Cultural Revolution of the proletariat was officially set in motion.
The Cultural Revolution was spread to all corners of society. Mao’s line – the revolutionary mass line – emphasized the initiative of the masses and the political awareness as the decisive factor for both economic growth and the realization of a socialist society. Factories and educational institutions were closed and thousands of young people from cities and intellectuals were sent out to work in the countryside – voluntarily or under duress. The shooting was also aimed at Mao’s opponents in the party. Prime Minister Liu Shaoqi was accused of being China’s Khrushchev and of trying to introduce capitalism into China. He was removed from office as head of state and did not survive the Cultural Revolution. Deng Xiaoping was the party’s secretary general, and along with a host of other prominent party members were purged.
It is estimated that at least some millions lost their lives during the Cultural Revolution. Partly by executions because they succumbed to prisons or as a result of the chaos the events created in both agricultural production and industrial production.
1969-75 Opening to the United States
In 1969, Mao even abolished the cultural revolution. His opponents in the party had then been largely purged. After the Ninth Party Congress in 1969, the military – which supported Mao – was dominant in top leadership (about 40%), and Lin Piao became second in party leadership after Mao. In September 1971, Lin Piao perished in Mongolia ifbm. a plane crash following an alleged failed coup attempt.
During the same period, China played an important role in the formation of the Alliance-free countries movement, although the superpower did not immediately join the movement. Furthermore, China sent technicians and workers to a number of third world countries, where they led various development projects, the most important of which was the construction of a railway linking Zambia to the Indian Ocean through Tanzania. Liberation movements in a large number of countries were inspired by China and the peasant war strategies devised by Mao Zedong and Lin Piao.
In the early 1970s, Prime Minister Chou En-lai began negotiations with the United States and Deng Xiaoping was rehabilitated. By 1971, it had sufficiently succeeded in breaking the isolation that China had brought in after the break with the West in 1949 and with the Soviet in 1963. Until then, the national government in Taiwan had represented China in the UN system. The United States abstained from vetoing this development, as the superpower had a number of economic and political benefits from improving relations with China. The pivotal turning point in relations with the United States was President Nixon’s visit to China in 1972, which was preparing the US withdrawal from Indochina. There is little doubt that after 1972 China sought to pressure the Vietnamese leaders to show a willingness to compromise on both the US and the Saigon regime. However, direct diplomatic relations between the United States and China were first established in 1976.
For China, the United States was no longer the main enemy. It, on the other hand, was Soviet. The Soviet allies were therefore systematically defeated by China. In Angola, China, together with the United States, supported the UNITA guerrilla against the Soviet-backed MPLA guerrilla, and in South Africa, China supported the Panafrican Congress (PAC) against the ANC. After Vietnam finally defeated the United States in 1975, relations with China continued to deteriorate, and in 1979 China invaded Vietnam to give it “a lesson” for its invasion of Cambodia, where it had removed the Khmer Rouge terrorist regime.
In 1975, Deng Xiaoping was elected to the top party leadership. By January 1975, Prime Minister Chou En-lai had launched a comprehensive economic plan to modernize agriculture, defense, industry and science. During Chou’s illness, Deng was given the main responsibility for the state administration and for the implementation of the plan. How this plan was to be implemented became the central theme of the political debate. The questions that characterized the Cultural Revolution were raised again: What is the role of the experts and the education system? How is the relationship between material and ideological motivations? It was the Cultural Revolutionary Group that specifically raised these issues and their criticism was particularly directed at Deng.
1976 Settled with the four-band and Mao’s politics
Chou died in January 1976 and Deng held the funeral speech, but after Chou’s death, criticism of Deng increased and he was dismissed from all his records in April. Hua Kuo-feng, meanwhile, had become interim prime minister. In September 1976, Mao died, and now it was Hua who held the funeral speech. In October, the Cultural Revolutionary Group – the so-called “four gangs” – was arrested and a campaign against it was launched. The four were: Mao’s widow Jiang Qing, Zhang Chunqiao, Yao Wenyuan and Wanga Hongwen. They were accused of conspiracy, and of the assaults and mistakes committed during the Cultural Revolution. In 1981, legal proceedings were opened against the four.
The balance between supporters of Mao’s political line and those of forced economic development was finally broken. Extensive cleansing was initiated to remove supporters of the four-band. This cleansing even affected several of Mao’s relatives. In July 1977, Deng was rehabilitated for the second time, taking over all his former political, military and administrative positions.
In 1978-79, criticism was opened, on condition that it was directed at the Cultural Revolution and its leaders. The “Spring in Beijing” centered on the “Democracy Wall” where the people could set up letters and express their views. The wall also allowed dissidents to spread their hitherto secret leaves. But when the criticism began to be directed at the Communist Party itself, the democracy movement was dissolved. The wall of democracy that had existed all the way back from the days of the Cultural Revolution was closed. Dissident Wei Jingshen, who had published a magazine demanding democracy, was prosecuted and sentenced to 15 years in prison.
According to COUNTRYAAH, the population of China in 2000 was 1,290,550,654, ranking number 1 in the world. The population growth rate was 0.790% yearly, and the population density was 137.4650 people per km2.