Communist Party, State Council Order Stronger Controls Over Society – CECC
The general offices of the Communist Party Central Committee (CPCC) and the State Council jointly issued an opinion that calls on Chinese authorities to strengthen controls over society and address a range of social problems as a means to “establish a harmonious society,” “improve the Party’s ruling capacity,” and “solidify the Party’s position in power,” according to a December 4 Xinhua article appearing in Chinese (on the central government’s Web site) and English. Two committees directly subordinate to the CPCC, the Political and Legislative Affairs Committee and the Committee for Comprehensive Management of Public Security, prepared the “Opinion Regarding Carrying Out Stable and Secure Development.” A spokesman from the Committee for Comprehensive Management of Public Security commented in a press statement appearing on the National People’s Congress Web site that the goal of the opinion is to curb a rise in the number of protests and demonstrations, and to combat crime.
The opinion calls for:
Focusing on Social Stability
The opinion identifies social order as necessary for Party control. The press statement says that Party and government officials must recognize that “development can only take place if [China] first has social stability.” The press statement also sets a goal of 2006 to decrease the number of civil disputes that result in criminal activity, and reduce the number of “mass incidents” such as strikes, marches, demonstrations, and collective petitions directed at Chinese government authorities.
Chen Jiping, head of the Committee for Comprehensive Management of Public Security, called for the implementation of similar social order measures in a December 27, 2004 interview appearing on the Web site of the Ministry of Justice. He noted that China did “not have completely firm social order, and this has affected social stability.” Chinese scholars have noted a rise in mass incidents, such as those involving worker rights, since 1994. During the summer of 2005, senior Chinese officials acknowledged that China faces increasing social unrest, but ruled out any political liberalization in response.