Xi urges youth to ‘love’ Communist Party
Beijing (AFP) – President Xi Jinping urged China’s youth on Tuesday to be loyal to the Communist Party as he sought to whip up patriotic sentiment in a nationalist speech marking the centennial of a student protest.
Xi delivered his hour-long plea at the Great Hall of the People to commemorate the May Fourth Movement, a landmark protest against colonialism and imperialism that rocked China in 1919.
The speech came as the party faces a slowing economy and a series of politically sensitive anniversaries, including 30 years since the June 4, 1989 crackdown on Tiananmen Square protesters.
“It’s very shameful if a person isn’t patriotic or even deceives or betrays the motherland. There is no place for such a person to stand anywhere,” Xi told rows of young people, workers, soldiers and Communist Party cadres, many writing notes as he spoke.
“In contemporary China, the essence of patriotism is to combine one’s love for the country with love for the party and socialism,” he said.
“Chinese youth in the new era shall listen to the words of the party and follow the steps of the party.”