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China Requires Lawyers to Swear Their Loyalty to Communist Party

China’s Ministry of Justice ordered lawyers who have just obtained or renewed a legal license to take an oath declaring their support for the leadership of the ruling Chinese Communist Party.

The ministry said lawyers are required to take such an oath within three months of receiving their certificates, according to a statement posted on the ministry’s website yesterday.

Lawyers are also ordered to “strive for the cause of socialism,” according to the oath. The move takes place amid a push by the party to maintain its control across different sections of society.

The party needs to “resolutely oppose all erroneous political tendencies contrary to the party’s basic line,” Vice President Xi Jinping said in a March 1 speech.

The oath “fully reflects the new requirements from the CPC Central Committee and the State Council,” the ministry said in the statement, without elaborating.

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