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Posts Tagged ‘Wen Jiabao’

China tamps down Middle East-inspired protests before they can gain momentum

March 1, 2011 Comments off

washingtonpost.com

The Chinese government met protesters with a show of force Sunday. In Shanghai, police converged whenever a group of more than a dozen people seemed to be forming. (Peter Parks)

BEIJING – Police and security officials displayed a show of force here and in other Chinese cities Sunday, trying to snuff out any hint of protests modeled on the uprisings in the Middle East and North Africa. In Shanghai, several hundred people trying to gather were dispersed with a water truck.

Premier Wen Jiabao, meanwhile, used a morning Internet chat to promise to purge senior officials who are corrupt and to rein in inflation and rising home prices, directly addressing some of the most common grievances of ordinary Chinese.

Since a January uprising in Tunisia spurred similar anti-government protests across the Arab world, threatening long-entrenched authoritarian regimes, China’s Communist rulers have reacted nervously, with both defensive and aggressive tactics.

Officials have used state-run media outlets to dismiss any comparisons of those regimes with China. At the same time, they have stepped up public comments on the need to address “social conflict” and to tackle problems such as the growing income disparity between the rich and poor. They also have Read more…

BRIC-The Trillion Dollar World Club

December 27, 2010 Comments off

Brazil, Russia, India and China matter individually. But does it make sense to treat the BRICs—or any other combination of emerging powers—as a block?

IN ANY global gathering, the American president is usually seen, at a minimum, as primus inter pares: the one who can make or break the final bargain and select his favoured interlocutors. So in Copenhagen last December, as negotiations for a new climate-change

treaty were entering their final hours, a hastily convened meeting between Barack Obama and China’s prime minister, Wen Jiabao, looked as if it would be the critical moment when a deal might be struck. But when the president turned up, he found not only Mr Wen but the heads of government of Brazil, South Africa and India. This was unexpected. The Americans even thought the Indians had already left the summit. What was conceived as a bilateral talk turned instead into a negotiation with an emerging-market block. As an additional sign that things were changing in the world, the president got a finger-wagging from one of Mr Wen’s hangers-on. But at least Mr Obama was in the room; Europeans were shut out while the emerging powers and America put the final touches to their deal.

This week the same developing countries are meeting again, in Brasília. On April 15th Brazil, India and South Africa—rising powers that are also democracies—put their heads together. The next day South Africa will drop out and Russia and China will join the party, to create a meeting of the so-called BRICs.

For this group, it is a second summit; last June their leaders met in Yekaterinburg, in Russia. That inaugural summit, which produced almost nothing concrete, appeared to be Read more…