Chen Quanguo

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Chen Quanguo
陈全国
Communist Party Secretary of Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region
Assumed office
August 29, 2016
DeputyShohrat Zakir (chairman)
General secretaryXi Jinping
Preceded byZhang Chunxian
Communist Party Secretary of Tibet Autonomous Region
In office
August 2011 – August 2016
GovernorPadma Choling
Losang Jamcan
General secretaryHu Jintao
Xi Jinping
Preceded byZhang Qingli
Succeeded byWu Yingjie
Governor of Hebei Province
In office
December 2009 – August 2011
LeaderZhang Qingli (party secretary)
Preceded byHu Chunhua
Succeeded byZhang Qingwei
Personal details
BornNovember 1955 (age 63)
Pingyu County, Henan
NationalityChinese
Political partyCommunist Party of China
Alma materZhengzhou University
Wuhan University of Technology

Chen Quanguo (Chinese: ; pinyin: Chén Quánguó; born November 1955) is a Chinese politician and current Communist Party Secretary of Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region and a member of the 19th Politburo of the Communist Party of China. Originally from Henan province, Chen was among the first batch of students to graduate university after the resumption of Gaokao examinations in 1978.

Chen worked up the ranks in the party bureaucracy in his home province from a minor local official to the deputy provincial party chief. In 2009, he became Governor of Hebei. Then in 2011, he became the party secretary (the top official) of the Tibet Autonomous Region, developing the region economically and instituting greater policing surveillance.[1][2]

In 2016, Chen was promoted to governor of Xinjiang. He has since then attracted press for his policies for increasing security in the region, pacifying separatist movements, and countering terrorism, most notably through "re-education camps" in Xinjiang, where the United Nations estimates that as many as 1 million people are being interred.[3][4][5]

Early life and education[edit]

Chen Quanguo is a native of Pingyu County in Zhumadian prefecture, Henan province. In December 1973, at the age of 18, Chen enlisted in the People's Liberation Army. He joined the Communist Party of China in February 1976.[6] After leaving the military in March 1977, he briefly worked at a car parts factory in Zhumadian.[7][8]

After China resumed the National Higher Education Entrance Examination which was interrupted during the Cultural Revolution, in March 1978 Chen was admitted to the Economics Department of Zhengzhou University in the provincial capital Zhengzhou.[7][8]

Career[edit]

Henan[edit]

Chen Quanguo graduated from Zhengzhou University in December 1981 and returned to work in his hometown of Pingyu, Henan. Starting in 1983 he worked for the prefectural government of Zhumadian, and in 1988 became the Communist Party Secretary of Suiping, a county under the administration of Zhumadian. In 1994 he was appointed the head of the Organization Department of the nearby prefecture-level city of Pingdingshan.[2][7][8]

From 1995 to 1997 Chen enrolled as a part-time student at the School of Business Administration of Wuhan University of Technology, obtaining a master's degree in economics. From 1996 to 1998 he served as the Mayor and Deputy Party Secretary of Luohe, another prefecture-level city in Henan.[2][7][8]

Chen Quanguo was promoted to Vice-Governor of Henan Province in January 1998, and worked in the administration of then Henan Governor Li Keqiang. Chen was regarded as a close confidante of Li. In November 2000 Chen was appointed by the CPC head of the Standing committee of the Henan Provincial committee in the provincial Organization Department. In April 2003 he became the Deputy Communist Party Secretary, President of the Party School of the CPC, and the President of the Henan Institute of Administration.[2][7][8]

Hebei[edit]

In November 2009 Chen Quanguo was transferred to neighboring Hebei and promoted to Acting Governor and Deputy Party Secretary of the province. He replaced Hu Chunhua, who became the Party Secretary of Inner Mongolia. In January 2010 he was officially elected by the provincial congress as Governor of Hebei at the third session of the 11th National People's Congress.[2][7][8][9]

Tibet[edit]

On August 25, 2001, the CPC Central Committee announced the appointment of Chen of the remote Tibet Autonomous Region as Party Secretary, the top official of the region. He replaced Zhang Qingli, who became the Party Secretary of Hebei.[2][7][8] Subordinate to Chen was the Chairman (governor) of Tibet, Padma Choling, who was replaced by Losang Jamcan in January 2013.[1]

Shortly after taking up his position August 2011, Chen implemented a new security policy for Tibet in the form of "convenience police stations" (便民警务站).[3] This divided urban centers into grids, allowing the authorities to systematically observe all activities within the area.[10] As of early 2016, more than 700 of these police stations exist throughout urban centers across Tibet.[11]

On May 8, 2012, Chen Guoquan was elected the first secretary of the party committee of the Tibet Military Region. During Chen Guoquan's office, Tibet has indeed achieved considerable economic development. Data show that Tibet's GDP grew by 11.8% in 2012. The growth rate in 2013 was 12.1%. The growth rate in 2014 was 12%, ranking first in the country. The growth rate in 2015 was 11%, and the region's GDP exceeded 100 billion yuan for the first time. In the first half of 2016, Tibet led other provinces and cities in China at a growth rate of 10.6%.[12]

Xinjiang[edit]

On 29 August 2016, Chen became the Communist Party Secretary of Xinjiang, replacing Zhang Chunxian. Upon taking office in Xinjiang, Chen became the first senior official in the history of the People's Republic to have occupied the top posts of both Xinjiang and Tibet. It signaled that Chen was a promising candidate for the 19th Politburo of the Communist Party of China, to be installed in the autumn of 2017, as the party chief position in Xinjiang ordinarily held a seat on the Politburo.[13]

He concurrently served as the first secretary and political commissar of the Xinjiang Production and Construction Corps Party Committee. At the First Plenary Session of the 19th CPC Central Committee held on October 25, 2017, Chen Guoquan was elected a member of the Political Bureau of the CPC Central Committee.[citation needed]

Counter-terrorism measures[edit]

Chen has overseen the construction of a network of "re-education" camps. He has also increased surveillance of residents by using advanced technology as well as increasing police presence.[14][15] As Xinjiang Party Secretary, Chen promoted the recruitment of the local population into the police force.[16]

After Chen took office, he issued a written military order[17] to Xi Jinping, General Secretary of the CPC Central Committee, and put forward the slogan:[18]

"In Xinjiang, if there is no stability then all our efforts are for nothing." (在新疆,没有稳定一切皆为零)

Since Chen Guoguo took office, there has been no reported terrorist attacks in Xinjiang since 2017. According to Ming Pao, Chen's measures to maintain stability in Xinjiang have been affirmed by the top level of the Communist Party of China.[19]

US Republican representatives Marco Rubio and other Chris Smith have accused the Chinese government of "detaining" Uyghurs, citing that their lives are being monitored on a daily basis by surveillance systems. In response, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Hua Chunying said on August 30 of the same year that "China's ethnic minority policy and actual situation are much better than those of the United States" and "relevant U.S. lawmakers are not qualified to criticize China on ethnic minority issues."[20]

The EU was invited to Xinjiang to see for themselves whether the allegations were true. The EU declined.[21]

Economic development[edit]

Chen Guoguo continued to introduce policies such as economic development, employment protection, housing projects, infrastructure improvement, and ecological protection, increasing the GDP of Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region from 752.9 billion yuan in 2012 to 109.2 billion yuan in 2017, with an average annual growth of 9%. Infrastructure investment totaled 1.94 trillion yuan, with an average annual growth rate of 27.5%, forest coverage rate increased from 4.24% to 4.87%, and oasis forest coverage rate increased from 23% to 28%.[12] (see List of Chinese administrative divisions by GDP)

Politburo[edit]

Chen Quanguo is a member of the 19th Politburo of the Communist Party of China. He was previously an alternate member of the 17th Central Committee of the Communist Party of China, and a full member of the 18th Central Committee.[2][7][8]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "China appoints new Tibet governor, hardline policies to remain". Reuters. 2013-01-29. Retrieved 2013-02-15.
  2. ^ a b c d e f g "Chen Quanguo". China Vitae. Retrieved 2013-02-15.
  3. ^ a b "Chen Quanguo: The Strongman Behind Beijing's Securitization Strategy in Tibet and Xinjiang - Jamestown". Jamestown. Retrieved 2017-10-11.
  4. ^ "China Uighurs: One million held in political camps, UN told". BBC. Retrieved 10 August 2018.
  5. ^ "U.N. says it has credible reports that China holds million Uighurs in secret camps". Reuters. Retrieved 10 August 2018.
  6. ^ Vitae, China. "China Vitae : Biography of Chen Quanguo". www.chinavitae.com. Retrieved 2017-10-11.
  7. ^ a b c d e f g h 陈全国简历 [Biography of Chen Quanguo] (in Chinese). Xinhua News Agency. Retrieved 2013-02-10.
  8. ^ a b c d e f g h 陈全国简历 [Biography of Chen Quanguo] (in Chinese). People's Daily. Archived from the original on 2013-01-16. Retrieved 2013-02-10.
  9. ^ "陈全国同志任河北省委副书记". 互联网档案馆,河北日报.
  10. ^ "Urban Grid Management and Police State in China: A Brief Overview". China Change. 2013-08-08. Retrieved 2017-10-11.
  11. ^ 网易. "七百便民警务站不仅代表西藏法治建设,更是百姓零距离的守护_网易新闻". news.163.com. Archived from the original on 2017-10-11. Retrieved 2017-10-11.
  12. ^ a b "【治疆策】"特殊"陈全国:闷声做事的边疆派". news.dwnews.com. Retrieved 2019-05-12.
  13. ^ "陈全国:从河南曾经最年轻的县委书记到新疆党委书记". Dahewang. 29 August 2016.
  14. ^ https://www.hongkongfp.com/2018/07/27/us-urged-sanction-chinese-officials-overseeing-sweeping-crackdown-muslim-region/
  15. ^ https://www.nytimes.com/2018/08/10/world/asia/china-xinjiang-un-uighurs.html
  16. ^ "Xinjiang's Rapidly Evolving Security State". Jamestown.
  17. ^ "两年无暴恐事件 陈全国铁腕治疆反恐模式将成中国各省模范". 早报. 2019-02-28. Retrieved 2019-05-12.
  18. ^ "西藏到新疆,"维稳"与"暗访"始终与陈全国相伴". news.ifeng.com. Retrieved 2019-05-12.
  19. ^ "鐵腕治疆 陳全國表現獲中央肯定 反恐模式或「輸出」他省鄰國 - 20190227 - 中國 - 每日明報 - 明報新聞網". web.archive.org. 2019-02-28. Retrieved 2019-05-12.
  20. ^ "外交部就我国成立最高人民法院国际商事专家委员会等答问_新闻发布_中国政府网". www.gov.cn. Retrieved 2019-05-12.
  21. ^ "Exclusive: China to invite European diplomats to Xinjiang in new..." Reuters. 2019-03-20. Retrieved 2019-05-12.

External links[edit]

Party political offices
Preceded by
Zhang Chunxian
Communist Party Secretary of Xinjiang
2016–
Succeeded by
incumbent
Preceded by
Zhang Qingli
Communist Party Secretary of Tibet
2011–2016
Succeeded by
Wu Yingjie
Government offices
Preceded by
Hu Chunhua
Governor of Hebei
2009–2011
Succeeded by
Zhang Qingwei