China Reportedly Boots Missing Foreign Minister

Qin Gang held a prominent position within the Chinese government, serving as one of its top officials. As the foreign minister, he played a crucial role as a prominent diplomat, even engaging in meetings with the US Secretary of State Antony J. Blinken. However, he has recently been removed from his position, and another individual has taken over his responsibilities.

Qin Gang was appointed as the foreign minister by the Chinese government in December. Before his promotion, he had been China’s ambassador to the United States since July 2021. President Xi Jinping’s choice to assign him to this influential diplomatic role sparked some controversy as he bypassed other senior diplomats who had been serving the country for a longer period.

During June, Blinken had a meeting with Qin Gang to engage in discussions about US-China relations. The State Department described the meetings with both Qin and Xi as “candid, substantive, and constructive.” In a lengthy five-hour session, the US Secretary of State extended an invitation to Qin to visit Washington, DC.

In the middle of July, journalists started observing that Qin had been absent from public view for some time. The 57-year-old diplomat was notably absent from important meetings with US climate envoy John Kerry and Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen. On July 19, NBC News disclosed that Qin had not been seen for three weeks, and the most recent public sighting of him was on June 25, when he held a meeting with counterparts from Vietnam, Russia, and Sri Lanka.

On July 5, the Chinese government decided to call off a scheduled meeting between Qin and Josep Borrell, the European Union foreign policy chief. Additionally, he was unable to attend a meeting with the Association of Southeast Asian Nations. Qin’s spokesperson, Wang Wenbin, informed the press that his absence was due to health problems.

When reporters inquired about Qin’s whereabouts from Mao Ning, the spokesperson for the Foreign Affairs Ministry, the official declined to respond, stating that there was “no information to provide.”

On July 25, the Chinese government dismissed Qin from his role as foreign minister, and Wang Yi, the former state councilor, has now taken over the position. The National People’s Congress Standing Committee made the announcement, but no specific reason was given for Qin’s removal.

The decision came after weeks of speculation surrounding his disappearance. Reports had circulated suggesting that there were rumors of him being possibly involved in a compromising relationship during his tenure as ambassador.




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