China detains another senior army officer in graft probe

BEIJING (REUTERS) - Another senior Chinese military officer has been detained on suspicion of corruption, state media said in Friday, as the country continues a sweeping campaign to stamp out graft in its armed forces.

The official Xinhua news agency and the ruling Communist Party's People's Daily said Major-General Liu Hongjie, who held a top logistical support position, had been placed under "coercive measures", which generally means detention.

The move had to be submitted by military prosecutors and approved by the Beijing city parliament as he was one of its deputies, Xinhua said.

Liu is suspected of abusing his position in 2013 and taking bribes, the People's Daily said on its website, without providing other details.

It was not possible to reach Liu for comment.

His case had not previously been reported by the government or state media.

The government has announced probes into more than a dozen senior military officials on serious graft charges.

Many of those implicated have ties to a scandal involving former top military officer Xu Caihou, who retired as vice-chairman of the powerful Central Military Commission in 2013. China announced last summer it was investigating Xu for graft.

Serving and retired Chinese military officers have said graft in the armed forces is so pervasive that it could undermine China's ability to wage war.

President Xi Jinping, who also serves as chairman of the Central Military Commission, has vowed to eradicate corruption in China's armed forces, which are 2.3 million-strong.

He is also overseeing a broader fight against graft, warning, like others before him, that the problem is so bad that it could threaten the party's grip on power.