Chinese President Xi Jinping
Xi Jinping and Vladimir Putin Meet For First Time Since Invasion Of Ukraine Photo by Sergei Bobylyov/SPUTNIK/AFP via Getty Images

Chinese President Xi Jinping has not made any public appearance since his return from a summit in Uzbekistan on Sep 16, with intriguing rumors surfacing that the Chinese government is facing a coup and he may be under house arrest by one of his top generals. China’s state media has made no comments on the rumors but reports all is well with the country and the President.

According to the WION News, social media went into a frenzy with several sources claiming a military takeover in China with its leader placed under house arrest. The rumors reportedly stemmed a couple of days after senior security officials were arrested and thrown into jail on corruption charges including its former minister of public security, the justice minister along with former police chiefs.

It was during the 10-day absence of the Chinese leader that the four high-profile security officials were arrested. Xi is understood to be cleaning house within the communist party of “disloyal” members ahead of the congress. The leader is also expected to be granted a third term after he changed the country’s presidential rule some years ago, which may pave the way for a permanent presidency, the The Sun reported.

This would make Xi, China’s longest-reigning leader since Mao Zedong. Rumors suggest that Xi may also revive the title of “The People’s Leader” at the Communist Party Congress on Oct 16.

The Chinese leader was also reportedly absent from the United Nations General Assembly in New York on Sep 21, sending a pre-recorded message in his place. He was said to be invited to Queen Elizabeth’s State Funeral but did not attend, sending only a representative to give his condolences. His disappearance suggests that he may be under quarantine after his return from Uzbekistan, as Communist Party Guidelines say that one must be quarantined for seven days in a facility and remain three days at home.

With Xi looking to become president for life, speculations that his enemies are looking to oust him are beginning to seem more likely. General Li Qiaoming is the person of interest as he is the senior-most member of the People’s Liberation Army and is believed to be Xi’s likely successor if the Chinese leader is to be removed from office. Local news agency Xinhua has discredited rumors that the president may be under house arrest by General Li. China’s insular and secretive ruling class makes verifying any internal plots difficult, unnecessarily fueling the fire to an unlikely rumor. Experts on China’s government also believe the rumor to be unlikely.

China's President Xi Jinping
China's President Xi Jinping attends a meeting with Russian President on the sidelines of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) leaders' summit in Samarkand on September 15, 2022. Photo by Alexandr Demyanchuk/SPUTNIK/AFP via Getty Images

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