China Moves to Extend Xi Jinping's Rule Beyond 2023
Chinese Communist party to lengthen presidency beyond two 5 year terms
China's ruling Communist Party has moved to extend the limits that currently restrict a presidency to two five year terms.
The new change in policy is designed to allow President Xi Jinping to stay in power beyond 2023 when he is due to step down.
It's been long speculated that Jinping is planning on extending his leadership beyond the current two-term limit.
Last year, Party Congress confirmed his status as the most powerful leader since the late Mao Zedong.
Jinping's ideology was also enshrined in the party's constitution, and in a break with convention, no obvious successor was unveiled.
What do we know about the move?
The announcement was carried on state news agency Xinhua on Sunday.
"The Communist Party of China Central Committee proposed to remove the expression that the President and Vice-President of the People's Republic of China 'shall serve no more than two consecutive terms' from the country's Constitution," it reported.
It gave no other details, but the full proposal is due to be released shortly.
The move comes with the top officials who make up the party's Central Committee due to meet on Monday in Beijing.
The proposal will go before legislators at the annual full session of the National People's Congress which starts on 5 March.
How significant is this?
Mr. Xi has been president since 2013 and under the current system was due to step down in 2023.
The tradition of limiting presidencies to 10 years emerged in the 1990s when veteran leader Deng Xiaoping sought to avoid a repeat of the chaos that had marked the Mao era and its immediate aftermath.
Mr. Xi's two predecessors have followed the orderly pattern of succession. But since he came to power in 2012, he has shown a readiness to write his own rules.