Xi Jinping Becomes China’s New Leader

    Chinese Vice President Xi Jinping waves to Thai students during a visit to Chulalongkorn University in Bangkok on December 24, 2011. Xi is on a three-day official visit to Thailand. AFP PHOTO/Pairoj (Photo credit should read PAIROJ/AFP/Getty Images)

    Pairoj, AFP / Getty Images

    It doesn’t happen often, but change is coming to China’s leadership. Vice President Xi Jinping is taking over for outgoing President Hu Jintao as chief of the Communist Party and its military, and in March, he will assume the presidency. The party also reduced the number of seats on its all important Standing Committee from nine to seven, in order to help with consensus building. Along with Xi, Li Keqiang, Zhang Dejiang, Yu Zhengsheng, Liu Yunshan, Wang Qishan, and Zhang Gaoli will be controlling the world’s second-largest economy for the next five years.

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