Wen Jiabao

China critics 'doomed to failure' as Wen seeks lawyers

PUBLISHED : Monday, 29 October, 2012, 6:30pm
UPDATED : Tuesday, 05 May, 2015, 9:48am

China on Monday warned its critics they were “doomed to failure” as Beijing confirmed that Premier Wen Jiabao’s family had employed lawyers to help fight The New York Times

“There are always some voices in the world who do not want to see China develop and become stronger and they will try any means to smear China and Chinese leaders and try to sow instability in China,” said foreign ministry spokesman Hong Lei.

“Your scheme is doomed to failure,” he added.

The official was responding to questions about Wen’s decision to hire lawyers to fight claims published by The New York Times last week that his family had owned assets worth US$2.7 billion.

“Premier Wen Jiabao’s family has entrusted lawyers to release a statement and will continue to clarify the report,” the spokesman said.

Friday’s New York Times article came at an especially sensitive time for China, as the Communist Party strives to clean house before a pivotal once-in-a-decade handover of power next month.

Detailing a string of deals, the New York Times said many relatives of the government’s number two – a self-styled man of the people – had become “extraordinarily wealthy” during his years in office.

Investments by Wen’s son, wife and others spanning the banking, jewellery and telecom sectors were worth at least US$2.7 billion according to an analysis of company and regulatory filings from 1992 up to this year, it said.