Sat, Jan 19, 2019 - Page 5 News List

Chinese official tells police to target uprisings

Reuters, BEIJING

China’s police must focus on withstanding “color revolutions,” or popular uprisings, and treat the defense of China’s political system as central to their work, the country’s top law-enforcement official said.

The stability-obsessed Chinese Communist Party has long tasked the nation’s police force with stamping out any form of social or political grassroots movement.

However, those efforts have intensified under Chinese President Xi Jinping (習近平), who has warned that China needs to do more to withstand “Western” influence that might undermine party rule.

Chinese police must “stress the prevention and resistance of ‘color revolutions’ and firmly fight to protect China’s political security,” Chinese Minister of Public Security Zhao Kezhi (趙克志) said on Thursday, according to a post on the ministry’s Web site.

“[We] must firmly defend our national security, with regime and system security at its core, and firmly defend the leadership of the Chinese Communist Party and our nation’s socialist system,” he said.

Police must also “strike back against all kinds of infiltration and subversive activities by hostile foreign forces,” he told the ministry’s annual national meeting.

The term “color revolution” refers to popular uprisings experienced by former Soviet states, such as the Ukraine, that often swept away long-established rulers.

Chinese officials have previously mentioned such uprisings as a warning to their own people about the trouble that might result from overthrowing long-standing governments.

China’s domestic security budget has not been detailed by the government in its annual work report since 2014, after the figure outstripped the military budget three years in a row.

Analyst estimates suggest spending has continued to soar, with security-related construction tripling in 2017 in the far western region of Xinjiang, where hundreds of thousands of individuals from Muslim ethnic minorities have been held in camps as part of a “de-radicalisation” drive.

Chinese Communist Party procurement documents suggest that Chinese police have also increased spending across the country as they adopt new high-tech devices, such as telephone scanners, to help surveillance.

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