Liu Yandong 刘延东
Former Politburo Member & Vice Premier, previously had oversight of United Front work (former head of United Front Work Department.)
Pronunciation: Leeyoo Yen-doong soundbite
Born: 1945 Jiangsu Province. She is a princeling; her father, Liu Ruilong (Ph.D. from Cornell U, 1937), was vice minister of agriculture and close to Jiang Zemin.
Education: Chemical Engineering, Tsinghua University.
Career: Most senior woman in China; only female Vice Premier.
Prospects: Missed out on promotion to the Politburo Standing Committee in 2012. Her age prohibited further promotion after 2017.
Relevance to Tibet: Former head of United Front Work Department and when a State Councilor she had oversight of United Front work and education (Confucius Institutes)
Standing in the Party and Career Highlights:
Vice Premier, Politburo Member (one of only two female Politburo members; highest-ranked woman in the Party).
Former Vice-Chair of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Committee. Former State Councilor with oversight of United Front work, Hong Kong and Macao as well as education, science and technology, culture and sport.
Despite her having reached retirement age, Cheng Li speculated that she may be promoted to the Politburo Standing Committee in 2012 and succeed Jia Qinglin as Chair of CPPCC (a largely ceremonial position). However, her chances were significantly reduced by the reduction of Politburo Standing Committee seats from nine to seven. She was named as a member of the 18th Politburo and in March 2013 appointed as a Vice Premier.
She is an ally of Hu Jintao from China Youth League, and also considered to be a protégé of Jiang Zemin and Zeng Qinghong. An un-named political commentator in Beijing told Malcolm Moore of the Daily Telegraph that, as the protests in Tiananmen Square flared up, Mrs Liu was on the central committee of a supportive Communist Youth League which sent food and water to the students camped out in the square – although her specific role in this is unclear.
She began work as political director in a Beijing chemical plant. Later work assignments include President of the 6th and 7th Councils of the All-China Youth Federation, and member of the Secretariat of the 11th and 12th CYLC Central Committees. Since 1982, she has been a member of the 21st Century Sino-Japanese Friendship Committee and Secretary-General of the Youth Ideological Education Research Center.
Tibet: 2002 – 2007 Head of United Front Work Department during which time she met the Dalai Lama’s envoys and was a member of the Tibet Work Leading Group. Honorary President of China Association for Preservation and Development of Tibetan Culture.
Was Vice-President of the Beijing Organizing Committee for the Games (BOCOG) and Vice-Secretary of its leading Party members’ group.
Quotations By/Comments About
- Reuters: She praised Sithar in 2006 for rejecting TGiE’s efforts to get him to defect in Switzerland in the 1980s. A source linked to TGiE confirmed efforts had been made.
- Malcolm Moore in Daily Telegraph, March 2013.: Those who have met her describe her as quietly efficient, modest and amiable. In one popular touch, she said “good job” and “thank you” in sign language when she visited a school for the deaf in Sichuan province. She also endeared herself to the public by jogging around Beijing’s Bird’s Nest stadium in tracksuit bottoms and by visiting China’s two sporting superstars, Yao Ming, the basketball player and Liu Xiang, the athlete, to wish them well when they were injured.”
- Congressional Executive Commission on China associates her with hard line policies in Tibet but gives no details She rarely expresses an opinion in public.
Liu Yandong’s Contact Information:
- Address: State Council Information Office. No.225 Changyangmennei Dajie, Dongcheng District, Beijing, 100010.
- Website: www.scio.gov.cn
- Phone: + 86 10 8652 1199
- Fax: + 86 10 6559 2364
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