Subscribe to our free daily newsletters
  China News  

Subscribe to our free daily newsletters

'My god, 3.5 hours': Xi gives marathon speech, China listens
By Becky Davis, Joanna CHIU
Beijing (AFP) Oct 18, 2017

As Chinese leader Xi Jinping delivered his three-plus-hour speech at the Communist Party congress, delegates ranging from men in suits to military officers and former presidents dutifully turned every page as they read and listened to his words.

On the internet, government bureaus peppered social media with their favourite phrases from Xi's speech, while photos circulated of children watching Wednesday's congress in classrooms.

The carefully orchestrated address was in keeping with the cult of personality that state media have crafted around the Chinese leader, who is expected to consolidate his already formidable power at the week-long conclave.

During his wide-ranging monologue about China's achievements and challenges ahead, Xi stood behind a glossy wooden lectern, resting both his palms on the stand and occasionally sipping from a white ceramic mug.

The majority male audience of nearly 2,300 delegates inside the imposing Great Hall of the People in central Beijing would interrupt their collective page-turning to applaud key sections of the speech.

Jiang Zemin, the 91-year-old former Chinese president, was seated prominently on stage and used a large magnifying glass to study the document.

He also conspicuously checked his watch several times.

"My god, 3.5 hours - what hard work," said a commenter on the Weibo microblogging platform, one of millions of citizens who were following the proceedings on social media.

Xi touted his nationalistic "China dream" slogan, and heralded a "new era" that will see "China moving closer to centre stage and making greater contributions to mankind".

When he concluded his speech -- which was twice as long as the one given by his predecessor Hu Jintao in 2012 -- the delegates applauded enthusiastically as Xi took a bow.

- 'You're so beautiful' -

On the promenade of Tiananmen Square outside, delegates strolled toward cars and buses to return to their hotels.

Only a smattering of women could be seen in the crowd, including some in traditional ethnic minority costumes.

"Your dress is so beautiful. You're so beautiful!" one male delegate exclaimed to a woman representing the Yao minority in Hunan province.

Others quickly brushed past journalists or asked reporters where they were from before accepting interviews.

"The speech was extremely good. The most important part was the idea of a new era, with everything getting better and moving forward," a delegate from Henan province told AFP, declining to give his name.

"I think Xi's thoughts should be included in the (party) constitution," he said, nodding when asked if Xi's name should also be enshrined, then saying he had to go.

Adding Xi's name to the constitution would put him in an exclusive club alongside Communist China's founder, Mao Zedong, and the architect of economic reforms, Deng Xiaoping.

- Children watching -

During Xi's speech, social media was flooded with images of watch parties across the country, with Communist party committees in areas as far-flung as northeastern Jilin and southern Yunnan provinces.

A number of the photos posted highlighted minority audience members such as the Hui Muslims, the Yi, or Tibetans.

Images also circulated of young children sitting obediently in their classroom in a semi-circle around a television playing Xi's speech.

By early afternoon, the hashtag #19thPartyCongress# on microblogging platform Sina Weibo had received a mind-boggling cumulative 1.19 billion views -- nearly one per every person in the world's most populous country.

As soon as the meeting ended, media outlets and government bureaus across the country peppered social media with the same graphic from the party's official mouthpiece the People's Daily: a series of 10 motivational quotes from Xi's speech pasted next to an image of him at his lectern.

"Every one of these is important," wrote one commenter, expressing a common refrain.

"Don't forget everyone to always cheer on the party!" wrote another.

It is unclear whether less fawning social media comments were posted but deleted by censors in a country with one of the world's most restrictive internet censorship regimes.

China's Jiang rises from the 'dead' for Communist meeting
Beijing (AFP) Oct 18, 2017
Rumoured to have died a few months ago, 91-year-old former Chinese president Jiang Zemin roused social media users Wednesday by taking a prominent place at the ruling Communist Party's leadership Congress. Proving that reports of his demise were greatly exaggerated, the former leader sat next to President Xi Jinping and stood for the national anthem as the twice-a-decade congress opened on n ... read more

Related Links
China News from

Thanks for being here;
We need your help. The SpaceDaily news network continues to grow but revenues have never been harder to maintain.

With the rise of Ad Blockers, and Facebook - our traditional revenue sources via quality network advertising continues to decline. And unlike so many other news sites, we don't have a paywall - with those annoying usernames and passwords.

Our news coverage takes time and effort to publish 365 days a year.

If you find our news sites informative and useful then please consider becoming a regular supporter or for now make a one off contribution.

SpaceDaily Contributor
$5 Billed Once

credit card or paypal
SpaceDaily Monthly Supporter
$5 Billed Monthly

paypal only

Comment using your Disqus, Facebook, Google or Twitter login.

Share this article via these popular social media networks DiggDigg RedditReddit GoogleGoogle

China launches three satellites

Mars probe to carry 13 types of payload on 2020 mission

UN official commends China's role in space cooperation

China's cargo spacecraft separates from Tiangong-2 space lab

Hiring not part of Alibaba pledge to create US jobs

US inflation jumps in the wake of Hurricane Harvey

Xi says China 'will not close its doors to the world'

Energy-hungry China takes step to buffer against economic shocks

Trump puts America first, but more and more alone

Lithuania hikes defence budget to meet NATO target

Moscow accuses US of 'quietly' adding troops in Eastern Europe

Ex-NATO chief urges allies to boost help for Ukraine

Greenpeace fireworks shine light on French nuclear safety concerns

Japan government, TEPCO liable for Fukushima crisis: court

French, Belgian nuke plants vulnerable to attack: Greenpeace

New 'molecular trap' cleans more radioactive waste from nuclear fuel rods

Engility to help protect DOD technology networks

Aircraft cyber-defense capabilities on BAE drawing board

Hacking the election: security flaws need fixing, researchers say

Equifax raises breach victim number to 145.5 million

Greenpeace fireworks shine light on French nuclear safety concerns

Japan government, TEPCO liable for Fukushima crisis: court

French, Belgian nuke plants vulnerable to attack: Greenpeace

New 'molecular trap' cleans more radioactive waste from nuclear fuel rods

Scotland outreach to Canada yields wind energy investment

OX2 hands over Ajos wind farm to IKEA Finland

Huge energy potential in open ocean wind farms in the North Atlantic

Wind farms in Atlantic could power the world: study

Memory Foam Mattress Review
Newsletters :: SpaceDaily :: SpaceWar :: TerraDaily :: Energy Daily
XML Feeds :: Space News :: Earth News :: War News :: Solar Energy News

The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2017 - Space Media Network. All websites are published in Australia and are solely subject to Australian law and governed by Fair Use principals for news reporting and research purposes. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA news reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. All articles labeled "by Staff Writers" include reports supplied to Space Media Network by industry news wires, PR agencies, corporate press officers and the like. Such articles are individually curated and edited by Space Media Network staff on the basis of the report's information value to our industry and professional readership. Advertising does not imply endorsement, agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. Privacy Statement