Chinese Foreign Minister Qin Gang had not been seen in public for a month.
Chinese Foreign Minister Qin Gang, who has not been seen in public for a month, has been relieved of his duties, the official Xinhua News Agency reported on Tuesday. Qin Gang, in office since December 2022, is replaced by his predecessor Wang Yi.
No reason is given by the agency, which reports other appointments including that of Pan Gongsheng, an economist by training, at the head of the central bank.
An intriguing absence
In office since the end of December, Qin Gang, with his usually busy schedule, has not been seen since June 25 and a meeting with his Vietnamese counterpart in Beijing. Since then, he has missed several diplomatic meetings, including an important meeting of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) in Indonesia in early July.
An absence that generated many rumors on social networks and increased the pressure on the authorities, who evaded many questions on the subject. The Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs justified the absence of Qin Gang by “reasons of health”, before walling itself in virtual silence.
Since the beginning of Qin Gang’s absence, his predecessor Wang Yi had already fulfilled part of the obligations of the now ex-minister. Wang Yi is the Chinese Communist Party’s top diplomatic official, a rank above minister.
Source: BFM TV