Chinese President Xi Jinping beefs up personal security amid massive anti-graft campaign

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Beijing, Mar 11: Chinese President Xi Jinping has reshuffled his personal security team as he tightened the noose around the corrupt within the ruling Communist Party and the powerful military whose 30 Generals are facing probe.

Maj Gen Wang Shaojun, the executive deputy commander of the Central Security Bureau which is in-charge of Xi's safety, has been promoted to lead the Bureau and also the Central Guard Regiment, the South China Morning Post reported today.

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The bureau's incumbent commander, Lt Gen Cao Qing, is being transferred to the Beijing Military Area Command as its deputy commander, the report said.

The powerful Central Security Bureau is responsible for the safety of top leaders and the Zhongnanhai compound in central Beijing, where many Communist Party leaders are based.

The bureau directly reports to the general office of Central Committee of the Communist Party headed by 61-year-old Xi. The security bureau wields considerable power and in the past has moved to stop possible coup attempts.

The bureau and Marshal Ye Jianying played a central role in the arrest of the 'Gang of Four' in 1976. The Cultural Revolution leaders were accused of plotting to seize power after Mao Zedong's death.

Xi's safety has been beefed up as he initiated unprecedented campaign against corruption within the party, military and the administration to restore the credibility of the one-party rule.

In all nearly 30 top military officials including the former Vice Chairmen of the Central Military Commission, Gen Xu Caihou and Gen Guo Boxiong, the officers with the highest rank who led the military under former President Hu Jintao.

Besides the military officials, Xi also ordered anti- graft investigations against the former national security chief, Zhou Yongkang, and his vast network. Zhou is the highest ranking CPC official in recent history to face such a probe.

Another report in the Post said Xi grew determined to shake up the army after he saw first-hand how his predecessor Hu was treated as a mere figurehead by the military officials.

Xi, who became the Central Military Commission's third vice-chairman in 2010, witnessed how his fellow vice-chairmen Xu and Guo took over the army's staff affairs right under Hu's nose, the Post quoted a military official as saying.

PTI

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