Alexa

Chinese Communist Party to hold major congress from Oct. 15, state television reports

Chinese Communist Party to hold major congress from Oct. 15, state television reports

China's ruling Communist Party will hold a major congress beginning Oct. 15, state television reported Tuesday, a twice-a-decade event at which President Hu Jintao will see his tenure as party leader renewed.
The congress will set the agenda for the party and country and likely will include a reshuffling of some top leaders. The changes could indicate possible successors to Hu, who is expected to step down as party chief in 2012 after 10 ten years in power.
Hu is not expected to face any direct challenges at the October meetings, although they will provide a test of the strength of his authority to make appointments and pursue policies.
The meeting comes as China faces increased media attention ahead of the Beijing Olympic Games, which start in just under one year.
China Central Television gave few details in its announcement of the congress, the 17th held in the history of the Chinese Communist Party. Founded in 1921, the party was led for decades by Mao Zedong, who emerged triumphant in a civil war to establish the communist state in 1949.
CCTV said the congress would elect a new Central Committee, whose 200 or so members include most of the country's top leaders. A portion of the Central Committee makes up the Politburo, which is led by the party's all-powerful Standing Committee.
Several of the Standing Committee's nine members are expected to be replaced at the congress, although it isn't known which ones or how many members the new Standing Committee will have.
Local party committees from across China will send 2,217 delegates to the congress, just a select handful of the party's 70 million members. While most delegates are party and government bureaucrats, about one quarter are ordinary workers, teachers, policemen, soldiers and teachers.
The congress' starting date had been a closely guarded secret and Tuesday's reports still did not say how long the meeting would last. Over the last 20 years, the sessions have run for about one week to 10 days.
In a brief report, the official Xinhua News Agency said the date of the congress was announced at a preparatory meeting Tuesday at which Hu presided.