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China hints at move to strengthen Communist rule at party congress

Published on Oct 22, 2012 9:01 PM
Paramilitary police officers stand guard at the closed Tiananmen Square, decorated for the upcoming 18th National Congress of the Communist Party of China, on a hazy night in Beijing, in this October 8, 2012 file photo. -- PHOTO: REUTERS

BEIJING (REUTERS) - China's ruling Communist Party will discuss a proposal to amend its Constitution at its congress in early November, state media said on Monday, a move aimed at strengthening one-party rule over the next five years.

State news agency Xinhua did not elaborate on what the amendments could be, though they have previously formed the guiding principles on which major policy decisions such as moving China in the direction of a market economy have been based.

"The meeting stressed the importance of making a draft amendment to the CPC (Communist Party of China) Constitution that conforms to the needs of the CPC's theoretic innovation, practice and development and will also promote the CPC's work and strengthen its Construction," Xinhua said, citing a statement from the meeting of the politburo.

The party "Constitution" is less a legal document and more an organisational guide and compilation of the ideological justifications that China's Communists have accumulated - and often quietly shelved - in their evolution from a party of Mao Zedong and mass revolution to one of mass markets and dynamic growth.

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