reluctance to unveil the growth rate of its military budget this year is that it is trying to avoid the further spread of the "China threat theory", foreign affairs experts said. "And look, he was able to do that".

Zhang did not comment on the prospect of lifelong tenure.

Instead he referred to the party constitution, which has no term limits for who heads the party and heads the military, positions Xi also holds and which are considered more senior in the country's hierarchy than the presidency.


"George Washington would roll over in his grave".

While responding to Trump's declaration, spokesman for the National People's Congress, Zhang Yesui said China does not want a trade war with the United States, but insist if the USA takes actions that hurt Chinese interests, China will not sit idly by and will take necessary measures.

This year's gathering of the ceremonial legislature has been overshadowed by the ruling Communist Party's surprise move to announce a plan to end two-term limits on the presidency.

The annual Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference, headed by Yu since 2013, is mostly ceremonial but created to present an image of a diverse, big-tent advisory body that includes non-Communist Party members, minority ethnic groups, business leaders, religious groups, artists, and representatives from Hong Kong and Macau all taking part in China's governance.


Zhang revealed that the party's Central Committee proposed the constitutional amendments, which include adding Xi 's eponymous political guidelines to the country's charter, in January.

According to China's official news agency Xinhua, a total of 2,980 deputies will elect the 13th NPC Standing Committee.

The announcement sparked a rare bout of public criticism, prompting censors to work furiously to stamp out dissenting posts on social media.

As Bloomberg writes in an article "China Political Advisers Urge Response to U.S. Tariffs", during the two-week session, the rubber-stamp parliament is expected to enact sweeping changes that would allow President Xi Jinping to rule indefinitely and give him greater control over the levers of money and power.


Zhang also accompanied Jiang on a visit to the United States in late 1997 and was in charge of coordination when Bill Clinton visited Beijing the following year, according to Guangzhou newspaper The Time Weekly.

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