China Party Official Commits Suicide After Removal, Xinhua Says

An official of the Communist Party of China in eastern Jiangsu province hanged himself today after an expensive dinner resulted in his dismissal, the official Xinhua News Agency reported.

Lou Xuequan, 50, was dismissed as party secretary of Luhe district in the provincial capital of Nanjing in June, Xinhua said, citing the local publicity department. The removal came after he was found by the local discipline authorities to have accepted an expensive dinner during a tour of an industrial park. The police have ruled out foul play in their preliminary findings, the report said.

Lou’s death came after authorities made an example of his dismissal to warn officials not to break the frugality rules set by the central government, the report said.

China is widening graft investigations after President Xi Jinping warned that corruption threatens the Communist Party’s six-decade hold on power. A campaign in July snared former security chief Zhou Yongkang, and in June claimed Xu Caihou, a former vice chairman of the Central Military Commission, the country’s highest military body.

— With assistance by Jun Luo

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