According to report by Hong Kong media including SCMP, Radio Television Hong Kong and Singtao Daily, 16 elder Chinese Communist Party (CCP) members in Shaotong, Yunnan wrote an open letter to CCP Central Committee on May 4, calling for the removal of Zhou Yongkang from the Politburo Standing Committee and the Central Committee’s political and legislative affairs committee and investigation and punishment of him by the Central Commission for Discipline Inspection. They also request the removal of Liu Yunshan from his post as the Director of CCP Propaganda Department and prevention of Liu from being selected into the CCP Politburo Standing Committee as they believed that Liu advocated Mao Zedong Thought.
The letter condemns Zhou for supporting Bo Xilai and praising his Chongqing model which undermined judicial independence and justice, gave rise to lots of wronged and false cases and spread terror to the whole society. Together, the two turned Chongqing into a base area for “copying the Cultural Revolution”, the letter says.
The release of the letter follows online news such as a coup in Beijing by Zhou Yongkang and Bo Xilai after Bo’s downfall, which were denied as rumors by CCP media. It seems the impact of the rumors persist and Britain’s Financial Times even said that Zhou retained his titles, but had handed over his office power and confessed his errors before other central leaders.
However, CCP’s official paper and news agency tried to dispel the rumors by publishing the full text of Zhou’s speech at aBeijinguniversity last week.
Yu Yongqing, who drafted the letter, said that they had received support from hundreds of people but also threat from some people who told them not to publish the open letter. In their letter, they support Premier Wen Jiabao’s suggestion on political structural reform and regard it as a vital measure to safeguard and enhance the achievements of the economic reform and solidifying CCP’s leadership.
The letter also denounces the Anti-rightist Campaign, Three Red Banners, Cultural Revolution and the June 4 Tiananmen Incident and holds that those events have brought shame to the CCP.
The letter was published by the news website www.canyu.org on May 9.
SCMP says, according to Yu, all the 16 people had been questioned by local police about the letter, who else had signed it and where they had acquired the information it contained.
Yu said that the interrogators said that they won’t punish the 16 people this time, but they cannot promise anything next time.
China’s official TV station CCTV runs a 4.5-minute long report in its prime time news today on Zhou Yongkang’s current Xinjiang inspection tour with lots of clips showing a smiling Zhou quite at ease. This writer believes the rumors are not based on facts, but the persisting impact of the rumors about Zhou in spite of official clarification shows official media’s lack of credibility among Chinese people.
The most interesting part in this item is that the letter denounces Tiananmen Massacre and says that it has brought shame to the Party, but the interrogators seemed to have disregarded such bold view on a very sensitive topic.
- Party Veterans Publish Open Letter to Hu and Wen (theepochtimes.com)
- China veterans urge Zhou sacking (bbc.co.uk)