Xi Jinping solidifies power grip in China after being awarded third term

Since Xi Jinping came to power in 2012 he has worked to establish his authority over Chinese politics, as Asia Correspondent Debi Edward reports

Xi Jinping has extended his grip on power in China after being unanimously awarded a third five-year term as the nation's president.

The result was greeted with a standing ovation and rapturous handshakes from his top team in Beijing.

A previous two-term limit for Chinese presidents was axed last year, paving the way for President Xi to retain the presidency until his death.

The 69-year-old was the only choice on the ballot and all 2,952 delegates voted for him to remain in the role.

Speaking after the result was confirmed, he pledged to "build a prosperous, democratic, civilised, harmonious, beautiful, great and modern socialist country".

President Xi was also named head of the Central Military Commission, which commands the Chinese Communist Party's military wing. For the last three decades the appointment has been automatic for the party leader.

In other voting, the party's third-ranking official, Zhao Leji, was named head of the National People's Congress, while former Shanghai party boss and member of the last Politburo Standing Committee Han Zheng was appointed state vice president.

President Xi's new term and the appointment of loyalists to top posts underscores his near-total monopoly on Chinese political power.

On Friday, Chinese state media described him as the "backbone of hundreds of millions of people".

President Xi has used his first 10 years in charge to establish his power grip in Beijing. He now has another five years to wield that power.

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