DHARAMSHALA September 9: China’s top security chief has urged police across the country to “safeguard social stability” for the upcoming 18th Congress of the Communist Party, which will see a change of guards in Beijing.
The official Xinhua News Agency on Saturday quoted Zhou Yongkang as saying the police should make efforts to create a “safe and stable” social environment to ensure the success of the national congress, dates of which are yet to be made public.
In its once a decade leadership change, China’s President and Communist Party supremo Hu Jintao is expected to hand over party reins to Xi Jinping.
“Police authorities at all levels must strive to safeguard social stability, the fundamental interests of the people and the authority of the law,” Zhou was quoted as saying.
Following the market slump and a series of labour unrests, China last year spent more on “public security” than the military for the first time. Public security, which covers state surveillance of its people and maintaining China’s paramilitary police, received a boost by nearly 14% to the tune of $95 billion.
Spending on China’s internal security is set to increase in the future, if Zhou is to be believed, who last year warned provincial officials of more unrest in China.
In July this year, China's propaganda chief, on a visit to Tibet, underlined the importance of maintaining stability and ordered officials to intensify the fight against separatism in the restive region.
Ranked fifth in the hierarchy of the ruling Communist Party, Li Changchun’s visit came in the midst of the ongoing wave of self-immolations, which has witnessed 51 Tibetans in Tibet, since 2009, set themselves on fire demanding freedom and the return of the Dalai Lama.
"We must guide officials and the people to continually strengthen their understanding of the great (Chinese) motherland and people and deepen and expand the fight against separatism," Li said.
He also pushed for an education campaign to "underscore the historic fact that Tibet is an inseparable part of China," which should form "the ideological basis for the fight against separatism and the maintenance of stability."