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Former Chinese Leader Resurfaces Before Political Transition

Jiang Zemin, the former Chinese president who was declared dead by a Hong Kong television station last year, is back in the headlines on the eve of a once-a-decade leadership transition in China, where retired elders have long influenced the political horse-trading process.

On Oct. 19 the official People’s Daily reminded readers that late paramount leader Deng Xiaoping once called Jiang, 86, a “qualified” Communist Party leader. The paper’s website the next day reported Jiang met university officials in Beijing and included a picture. Xinhua News Agency said Oct. 21 he congratulated his old middle school on its 110th anniversary.