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Straight from the Specialists

Xi Jinping at the helm in Beijing, responsibility looms large

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(The views expressed in this column are the author’s own and do not represent those of Reuters)

The carefully orchestrated and much awaited leadership transition in Beijing was formally concluded on Thursday with the elevation of Xi Jinping as the general secretary of the Communist Party of China.

Taking over from Hu Jintao, Xi also assumed chairmanship of the Central Military Commission (CMC). This is a significant departure from the 2002 transition when Hu’s predecessor Jiang Zemin had stayed on as head of the military commission for two years after stepping down as party chief.

The seven-member Politburo Standing Committee was also unveiled, setting at rest speculation about who would occupy the apex of power in Beijing.

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