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Retired Military Leaders Saluted Zhang Youxia But Not Xi Jinping

The Chinese Communist Party’s Central Military Commission (CMC, 中共军委) held a cultural performance on January 29 for the retired military leaders who are in Beijing. Xi Jinping led CMC members including Zhang Youxia, He Weidong, Liu Zhenli, Miao Hua, and Zhang Shengmin to attend the event.

The China Central Television’s (CCTV’s) video revealed that, when Xi waved to the retired military leaders, only one saluted him. But those retired military leaders saluted the CMC’s Vice Chairman Zhang Youxia. Zhang also responded back with salutes frequently. CCTV quickly removed this scene.

In CCTV footage from previous years, Xi would enter the venue, shake hands one by one with the retired military leaders in the front row, and many retired military leaders in casual attire would salute him before shaking hands. This year, however, Xi did not shake hands with the retired military leaders; instead, he waved from a distance. Speculation from the public suggests that this change might have been due to the ongoing COVID pandemic.

Source: NTDTV, February 1, 2024