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Beijing marks 70th anniversary of People’s Republic of China

UNITED STATES, WASHINGTON (OBSERVATORY) — Beijing is preparing to celebrate the 70th anniversary of the founding of the People’s Republic of China in 1949, amid celebrations of President Xi Jinping’s exploits despite counter-winds from Washington and Hong Kong.

Beijing is set to see the largest civilian and military parade in the world’s most populous nation on October 1, aimed at reviving the national spirit of a nation that in 70 years has become the world’s second largest economy after decades of war and misery. .

The offer will also be an opportunity to introduce the latest weapons from the Chinese military, which is sometimes viewed by neighbors as a source of concern, especially those on the South China Sea.

But the unity of the giant Asian state has been affected in recent months by an unprecedented protest movement in Hong Kong, which Beijing regained from the British colony in 1997.

The protesters had announced that they would corrupt the upcoming celebrations and called for a demonstration on October 1. Local authorities in Hong Kong canceled the fireworks ceremony for fear of violence.

China’s economic power has been threatened since last year by a trade war by US President Donald Trump, who imposed punitive tariffs on Chinese products.

Beijing has also come under international criticism for its policy in the mainly Muslim northwestern region of Xinjiang, where rights groups say one million people have been placed in closed centers for fighting terrorism.

– Between forty and seventy million dead –

However, President Xi will be the undisputed champion of the celebrations marking the establishment of the People’s Republic of China by Mao Zedong on October 1, 1949.

On Tuesday, Xi Jibing will review the military formations and make an “important speech,” state media said.

Many analysts see the current Chinese president as the most powerful leader since Mao, who had plunged the country into chaos with a policy of “Great Leap Forward” and “Cultural Revolution.”

The “Black Book of Communism”, compiled by university scholars in 1997, put the number of victims of the Chinese Communist regime at between 40 and 70 million, counting the victims of purges and famine that followed the “Great Leap Forward” economic policy, and then suppressed the protest movement in 1989. .

However, economic reforms launched after Mao’s death in 1976 pushed China to the top of the world economy.

However, the unprecedented economic growth of recent times has shown signs of weakness. In 2018, it was the lowest in almost three decades as production costs approached those in the West.

The rise in the price of pork due to the African swine fever epidemic is now affecting the livelihood of Chinese consumers fond of the product.

– Kite Prevention –

Nevertheless, the Communist Party of China remains firmly in power in the country. Since Xi Jeping came to power in 2012, he has stifled every hope of political reform, boosted censorship of citizens through hundreds of millions of cameras and a massive blocking of the Internet based on sifting all information from abroad.

As the anniversary drew closer, Beijing’s security was beefed up. Pubs, restaurants and shops in some neighborhoods have been closed for several weeks. In the city, the sale of plastic pistols and kites was banned.

A month ago, at the end of each week, there has been training on the parade, which will be held on the huge Eternal Peace Avenue, leaving the capital’s center almost besieged. Institutions overlooking Avenue, mainly foreign media, were asked to leave.

On Tuesday, hundreds of thousands of staff and students will take part in the parade in front of a podium of leaders at the Gate of Heavenly Peace off Tiananmen Square.

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