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Wen Jiabao

Premier of China between 2003 and 2013, Wen Jiabao served as vice-premier between 1998 and 2002. Wen, who was born in 1942, spent 14 years working in Gansu province’s geological bureau before being promoted in 1982 to vice-minister of geology and mineral resources. Wen graduated from the Beijing Institute of Geology in 1968 and has a master’s degree in geology. He was a member of the Politburo Standing Committee between 2002 and 2012. 



New York Times' effort to 'smear' China 'doomed to fail'

Party mouthpiece launches attack on credibility of US daily after report of Wen family's riches

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 30 October, 2012, 12:00am
UPDATED : Tuesday, 30 October, 2012, 4:06am

China yesterday warned its critics they were "doomed to failure", as Beijing confirmed the family of Premier Wen Jiabao had employed lawyers to help fight The New York Times following a report about the family's wealth.

"There are always some voices in the world that 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," Foreign Ministry spokesman Hong Lei said. "Your scheme is doomed to failure."

Hong 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 controlled 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.

Meanwhile, though mainland media have remained silent about Friday's report, the Communist Party's mouthpiece has begun attacking the credibility of The New York Times.

In a column posted on the People's Daily website, the paper's former international news editor Ren Yujun noted that Mark Thompson, the former BBC director general and next chief executive of the Times, was being "challenged" amid a sex scandal involving the late BBC host Jimmy Savile.

Yesterday, Ren wrote another article headlined, "The New York Times' reputation tarnished by scandals in recent years", recalling episodes including the probe of former Times reporter Jayson Blair, who fabricated and plagiarised dozens of reports.

Friday's New York Times article came at an especially sensitive time as the party strives to clean house before the handover of power next month. Several retired party leaders have recently made public appearances in an effort to assert their influence.

Tsinghua University's business school said yesterday former premier Zhu Rongji and Vice-Premier Wang Qishan met the school's advisory board on Wednesday in Beijing. Zhu is the school's founding dean, while Wang, a front runner to advance to the Politburo Standing Committee, is an honorary member of the board.


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This article is now closed to comments

I trust the integrity of Wen Jiaobao, if not his family. I am not a fan of NYT as they have credibility problems throughout the years.
What's the point of blocking the NYT now? The damage has been done. I have an idea - don't just block one of the most respected news organizations in the world, why not just block all foreign websites? Then there will be no instability in China and everybody can live happy in their socialist paradise!
Must see from NYTIMES
Love the shrill Maoist era sloganeering against the West when this sort of stuff pops up. Good entertainment and it really must have hit the mark to evoke these sorts of responses!
What is really "doomed to failure" in the long-term is a government that continues to hide behind a wall of secrecy, lies and grand abuses of power.
So have they allowed their Chinese citizens to free information access to The New York Times article yet for them to read for themselves and draw their own conclusions? Or is it still blocked? Why does their government treat their citizens as children and decide what they can and cannot read? It is ludicrous.
People's Daily vs The New York Times, really?


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