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Rumours about Xi Jinping’s house arrest and military coup are false

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A post is being widely shared claiming that the Chinese president Xi Jinping has been put under house arrest and has lost contact with the world. Let’s verify the claim made in the post.

Claim: Chinese president Xi Jinping has been put under house arrest and lost contact with the world.

Fact: Reports suggest that Xi Jinping has been in quarantine for 10 days following his Uzbekistan’s visit for SCO summit on 16 September 2022. On 27 September, he appeared in public for the first time since returning from the SCO, at the communist party’s exhibition Also, according to air traffic experts, there have been many flight cancellations in China due to COVID-19 and the recent trend shows nothing suspicious. Hence the claim made in the post is FALSE.

We searched the internet with relevant keywords and found no credible reports confirming the house arrest of Chinese President. According to ‘The Hindu’, On 27 September 2022, Xi Jinping visited an exhibition of Communist party. This was his first public appearance since returning 11 days ago from Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) summit in Uzbekistan on 16 September 2022.

According to the Indian Express, Xi’s absence from public interactions may have been due to seven days mandatory quarantine in a designated place followed by a three-day home stay as per the official guidelines for those returning from abroad under the Dynamic Zero COVID policy, firmly advocated by Xi himself. Latest visuals of Xi Jinping at the exhibition can be seen here.

What fuelled these rumours of house arrest and Military coup?

On 23 September 2022, Jennifer Zeng, a Chinese-born human rights activist and a CCP dissident who is currently living in US, tweeted a video on Twitter which shows military vehicles lined up on the road. She claimed that the entire procession of these vehicles was headed to Beijing on 22 September 2022. She also added that there were rumours about Xi’s house arrest and CCP seniors had removed Xi as head of PLA. This video gathered over 3.8 million views. But no international news agency confirmed this news. However, she later learnt that the rumours are not true.

Since Chinese media has not condemned these rumours, several people on social media started linking several unrelated incidents to this rumour. Some users claimed that several flights were cancelled in China citing the military coup as reason.

However, according to Associated Press, the flight cancellations follow normal pattern. Ian Petchenik, director of communications for FlightRadar24, says, “Yes, there were a ton of flight cancellations on the 21st. But there have been a ton of flight cancellations on the 20th, 19th, 18th, 17th, going back and back and back for two years now. In no way is this surprising, concerning, suspenseful or anything”

Also, several old and unrelated videos were falsely shared as scenes of explosion in Beijing. Other users speculated that the CCP seniors wanted to get rid of Xi Jinping ahead of the 20th National Congress Meeting which is supposed to be held on October 16. However, putting an end to all these rumours, Xi Jinping made a public appearance on 27 September 2022 at the Communist party exhibition in Beijing. Reports suggest that the Zero Covid policy followed by China, is the reason for president’s absence from public appearances.  

To sum it up, the rumours about Xi Jinping’s house arrest and Military Coup in China are not true

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