After the stampede tragedy in Shanghai triggered a storm in the city’s political circles, people have been calling for the resignation of Party Secretary Han Zheng, and Mayor Yang Xiong of Shanghai.
Such changes would shake the foundation of former Chinese Communist Party chief Jiang Zemin who is widely known as the leader of the Shanghai faction. Jiang’s faction is in a deadly power struggle with current leader Xi Jinping and his allies.
At this sensitive moment, news of Jiang‘s appearance was published by several state media on Jan. 3. Interestingly, the stories were deleted soon after.
Jiang and his family climbed Dongshan ridge on Hainan Island at the beginning of new year, according to Epoch Times. Jiang, who is now 88, needed assistance from the others. He said he would promote the destination along with the saying “Rise again in East Mount” after he returned to Beijing.
Current affairs commentator Xia Xiaoqiang said that Jiang was making a direct challenge to Xi Jinping, and trying to make a political comeback:
Jiang’s appearance… is an attempt to flaunt his status and show that he still has political influence.
The two factions’ struggle for power has intensified recently, and become more open in the final showdown. Jiang’s appearance also suggests that Xi’s anti-corruption campaign is approaching the core of Jiang’s power.