- 36 updates
Chinese state media announced today that party congress to select new leaders will be held on November 8.
Congress occurs once every five years, this year leader Hu Jintao will step down after ten years as party boss. He will be replaced by Xi Jinping.
China's government has expelled disgraced senior politician Bo Xilai from the Communist Party and said it would hand him over for criminal investigation accused of multiples crimes.
Bo's wife and his former police chief have both been jailed over the scandal stemming from the murder of British businessman Neil Heywood in the southwestern city of Chongqing, where Bo was Communist Party chief.
A statement by the Chinese state news agency Xinhua said Bo has "abused his powers of office, committed serious errors and bears a major responsibility".
Bo will face charges for corruption, abuse of power, bribe taking and improper relations with a number of women.
"Bo Xilai's actions created grave repercussions, and massively damaged the reputation of the party and the state," said the statement.
Chinese state media has announced that disgraced senior Communist party member Bo Xilai has been expelled from the party, and will face criminal charges of corruption, abuse of power, bribe taking and improper relations with a number of women.
This footage released by Chinese state broadcaster CCTV shows Gu Kailai in court as the verdict in her trial for the murder of British businessman Neil Heywood is announced.
During the hearing, Gu briefly addressed the court and said: "This verdict is just. It shows special respect for the law, reality and life".
Chinese state news agency Xinhua.net has quoted Gu Kailai as saying in her final statement:
Speaking after Gu Kailai's sentence, court official Tang Yigan said that Gu and family aide, Zhang Xiaojun, had told the court they would not appeal their sentences.
Tang said Gu told the court that the verdict was "fair and it shows special respect for the law, reality and life."
He also said that the court had considered Gu's testimony against others, her confession and repentance, and her "psychological impairment" as mitigating factors in sentencing.
But he said it rejected claims that Heywood's threats had prompted the crime, saying there was no evidence he intended to make good on them.
Four policemen accused of covering up Neil Heywood's murder have been given prison sentences, ranging from five to 11 years.
Former deputy Chongqing police chief Guo Weiguo and leading officer Li Yang were sentenced to 11 years.
Officers Wang Pengfei and Wang Zhi were given five years each.
Britain's embassy in China has welcomed the ruling that Gu Kailai has been convicted, but spared execution for murdering British businessman Neil Heywood. The embassy said it:
An embassy spokesman also said Britain had:
Latest ITV News reports
Gu Kailai could be freed from jail within 10 years after being found guilty of killing British business consultant Neil Heywood.
A Chinese court has given Gu Kailai, the wife of ousted politician Bo Xilai, a suspended death sentence for the murder of Neil Heywood.