December 2, 2022
BEIJING – Solemn scenes as honor guard carries casket from plane
The remains of Comrade Jiang Zemin, an outstanding leader whose high prestige is acknowledged by all members of the Communist Party of China, the entire military and the Chinese people, were transferred to Beijing from Shanghai aboard a special flight on Thursday afternoon.
President Xi Jinping, who is also general secretary of the CPC Central Committee, and other Party and State leaders received Jiang’s remains at the capital’s Xijiao Airport, where they extended deep condolences to Jiang’s relatives.
The national flag was flown at half-staff at the airport, and black banners reading “Eternal glory to Comrade Jiang Zemin” and “Comrade Jiang Zemin always lives in our hearts” were displayed at the venue.
Xi, his wife Peng Liyuan, and others, wearing black armbands and with white flowers pinned to their chests, stood solemnly on the tarmac.
The special flight arrived at 3:55 pm, and an honor guard of 12 then slowly carried the late Chinese leader’s casket from the aircraft.
Bearing the casket, they marched before the mourners gathered at the airport, as Xi and other senior officials bowed three times and looked on as the guards then conveyed the casket to a hearse.
Members of the office of Comrade Jiang Zemin’s Funeral Committee, which was formed on Wednesday, and Jiang’s relatives escorted his remains.
Before the solemn event in Beijing, a ceremony was held at Huadong Hospital Affiliated with Fudan University in Shanghai at 12:10 pm, as members of the office of the funeral committee, top officials in Shanghai, members of Jiang’s family, friends and medical workers bade farewell to the late Chinese leader.
They escorted the casket to Shanghai Hongqiao Airport, while members of the public in Shanghai lined the streets to pay tribute to Jiang.
Jiang, who passed away in Shanghai on Wednesday at the age of 96, has been hailed as a great Marxist, a great proletarian revolutionary, statesman, military strategist and diplomat, a long-tested communist fighter, and an outstanding leader of the great cause of socialism with Chinese characteristics in a letter addressed to the whole Party, the entire military and the Chinese people of all ethnic groups.
He was the core of the CPC’s third generation of central collective leadership and the principal founder of the Theory of Three Represents, said the letter.
In a gesture of utmost respect and mourning by the whole Party, military and people, the national flags at Tian’anmen Square, Xinhuamen, the Great Hall of the People, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Liaison Office of the Central People’s Government in the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, the Liaison Office of the Central People’s Government in the Macao SAR and Chinese embassies and consulates in foreign countries are being flown at half-staff starting on Thursday.
In an announcement made on Thursday, Comrade Jiang Zemin’s Funeral Committee said a memorial meeting for the late Chinese leader will be held on Tuesday at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing.
The committee said the event will be broadcast live, and called for local authorities and departments to organize Party members, officials and the general public to listen to or watch the live broadcast.
During the day of the memorial meeting, national flags across China, and those at the nation’s embassies, consulates and other agencies stationed overseas will be flown at half-staff. All public entertainment activities will be halted on that day, according to the announcement.
People across the country will pay a three-minute silent tribute and horns and sirens will be sounded for three minutes as silence is observed at the memorial meeting on Tuesday morning.
No ceremony for paying last respects to Jiang’s remains will be held, the committee said.