China's Communist Party has concluded its twice-a-decade congress by approving amendments that strengthen Xi Jinping's power. This is reported by Reuters.
The congress appointed Xi Jinping, 69, to a third five-year term as leader, cementing his place as China's most powerful ruler since Mao Zedong, the founding leader of the People's Republic of China.
Amendments to the party charter identify Xi as the party's "core" leader and enshrine his ideas as guiding principles for China's future development. The "two guarantees" ensure Xi's "core" status in the party and the party's centralized power over China.
Another amendment enshrined in the party's charter "the development of fighting spirit, strengthening of fighting capacity."
At the same time, the new Central Committee of the Communist Party of China is missing two key officials who do not have close ties to the leader. The party's new 205-member Central Committee did not include outgoing Premier Li Keqiang and former Guangdong provincial party chief Wang Yang, who had been seen as a potential replacement for the premiership.
Analysts say their absence is due to the fact that the seven-member Politburo Standing Committee to be unveiled on Sunday is likely to include people close to Xi.
"The main theme of this congress, as can be seen from the amendment to the constitution and the report, is to emphasize the main status of Xi. With this congress, Xi's authority will increase even more. In the future, we will see a great concentration of power around Xi and around the center," - said Chen Gang, a senior fellow at the East Asia Institute in Singapore.
Li, who will step down as premier in March, and Wang, who heads the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference, are both 67 and, under China's age norms, are eligible to serve another five years in the Permanent committee
None of them have long-standing ties to Xi, who analysts and media reports say is likely to bring four new members to the Standing Committee
Li and Wang are linked to the Communist Youth League, a once influential group that experts say has lost power under Xi.