“Push the blade”: Xi shakes up Chinese law enforcement

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Credit…Pool photo by Jason Lee

The campaign is expected to last until early 2022, on the eve of a Communist Party congress that will install a new cohort of central officials and, most likely, extend Xi’s time in power. The campaign advertisement described local officials studying Mr. Xi’s writings and speeches in nighttime indoctrination classes.

Teams of investigators have already torn up executives accused of corruption and other abuses. In the campaign’s first week, 21 officials from the public security or justice systems were investigated, officials said.

Investigators this week revealed that Shanghai Public Security Bureau chief Gong Dao’an was investigated into allegations that had not been publicly clarified, making him the most prominent. police official overthrown since the start of the campaign.

Other recently fallen officials include a former prison chief in Inner Mongolia, a region in northern China; the head of public security in Jiangmen, a city in southern China; and a longtime former state security official in eastern Jiangsu Province. The specific allegations against them have not been made public.

Earlier this year, Sun Lijun, a deputy minister of public security, was investigated. Unconfirmed rumors that retired central security leaders could be investigated have spread among political insiders in Beijing and have spread across the internet.

“This suggests continued pressure from Xi Jinping to remake the Chinese coercive apparatus into a force that is fully politically responsive to his leadership,” said Sheena Chestnut Greitens, associate professor at the University of Texas at Austin, who studies Chinese police and has written an upcoming article on cleaning up China’s law and order bureaucracy.

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