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China police chief warns of rising demands, unrest

Written by: Staff

BEIJING, Oct 25: China's top police officer urged the government to strengthen control of its increasingly diverse and demanding society as it seeks to tame rising unrest, an official newspaper reported today.

China's buoyant economic growth is shadowed by rising discontent from citizens who expect a bigger share of wealth and opportunity, Minister of Public Security Zhou Yongkang wrote in the People's Daily, the mouthpiece of the ruling Communist Party.

''People's social expectations of reform and opening up are universally rising, and their demands to share the fruits of reform and opening up are clearly rising,'' Zhou wrote.

''Nowadays, many social conflicts and problems are clearly focused on problems with people's basic well-being.'' Zhou called for continued economic growth and new policies to channel China's rising tide of migrant workers, as well as greater control over Internet usage, and monitoring and heading off of public complaints.

Zhou, who has been mentioned by Chinese political analysts for potential promotion to the party's inner-circle, has previously warned of a rising tide of protests, strikes and violent clashes challenging party control.

Last year, he said China had 74,000 such ''mass incidents'' in 2004 compared with 58,000 in 2003, the most recent reported figures.


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