According to a recent report from The Wall Street Journal (WSJ), China’s former Foreign Minister Qin Gang has been stripped of his position due to an extramarital affair. This comes as a shocking revelation from a country that rarely publicizes such personal indiscretions, particularly of individuals occupying high-ranking government positions.
Qin Gang, who has served as a steadfast diplomat for China, was appointed as Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs in 2018. As an experienced diplomat who held several senior postings in China’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs, his removal comes in the midst of China’s growing international tensions, making it a matter of great interest both domestically and globally.
The WSJ report suggests that a serious disciplinary violation was the underlying reason for his removal. The leading global business publication cited unnamed sources who confirmed an alleged extramarital affair. It is an act considered to be morally reprehensible according to the strict rules of the Communist Party of China which demands high standards of personal conduct from its members.
More interesting is the fact that this disclosure has emerged at a time when the Chinese government is making concerted efforts to instill moral integrity and party discipline among its members. President Xi Jinping has repeatedly stressed the importance of ethical conduct among officials, driving an anti-corruption campaign aimed at “swamp clearing” alleged corrupt officials in the government machinery.
Qin Gang’s removal is a sign of Beijing’s intensifying crackdown on personal improprieties among public servants. This follows recent cases of senior officials getting stripped of their posts due to similar misconduct.
It is yet to be seen how this development affects China’s foreign relations and its overall international image. However, it certainly serves as a stern reminder that personal integrity stands as a paramount requirement for individuals in service of the nation. At the same time, it also underscores China’s strict adherence to its moral codes and intolerance of corruption and misconduct, regardless of one’s governmental stature.