China's third plenum

The Chinese Communist Party's third plenum of the 18th Party Congress traditionally sets the economic tone for the Chinese government's next five-year term.

Petitioners protest over land grabs in Shandong. Photo: AFP

Petitioners 'living in fear' as police crackdown ahead of third plenum

Police and local governments across the mainland have been rounding up petitioners, keeping activists under close watch and warning rights lawyers to keep a low profile as security is stepped up ahead of the Communist Party Central Committee’s third plenary meeting that begins on Saturday.