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CHINA HAILS PURGE OF ZHAO, PRAISES HIS REPLACEMENT
TAKES AIM ON LOW-LEVEL OFFICIALS WHO SUPPORTED PROTESTS

SHARE CHINA HAILS PURGE OF ZHAO, PRAISES HIS REPLACEMENT
TAKES AIM ON LOW-LEVEL OFFICIALS WHO SUPPORTED PROTESTS

China's massive propaganda machine Monday hailed the purge of Communist Party chief Zhao Ziyang and gave wide media exposure to his relatively unknown replacement, former Shanghai Mayor Jiang Zemin.

The party also took aim on lower-level officials who supported what China has repeatedly termed "counterrevolutionary" protests centered on Beijing's Tiananmen Square, saying they could even be expelled or jailed.A newspaper reported tough prison sentences for 14 Shanghai "hooligans" known as the "Wild Goose Dare-to-Die Team" who allegedly disrupted traffic and beat automobile drivers after the military's bloody attack June 3 on democracy protesters in Beijing.

The government claims only 300 people died in the army's armor-led assault on protesters and their supporters in Beijing, but other sources have placed the death toll in the thousands.

The government last week executed at least 10 people involved in the protests, and an estimated 2,000 others have been arrested in a nationwide crackdown on dissent. Another 17 people were executed last week in the northeastern city of Jinan, but it was not known how many of those death sentences were related to the democracy protests.

Zhao, 71, was ousted Saturday by the party's Central Committee for "supporting" the student-led democracy protests that presented China's leaders with their strongest challenge in 40 years of Communist rule. He was replaced by Jiang, 62.

Analysts said the selection of the relatively unknown Jiang, who is the Communist Party boss in Shanghai, amounted to a compromise with ultra-conservatives who got rid of the outspoken Zhao but did not disturb paramount leader Deng Xiaoping's decade-old economic reform programs.

An editorial in the Communist Party newspaper, People's Daily, Sunday promised continuation of Deng's reforms and "open-door" policy to foreign investment, which Zhao helped implement, saying they "will not be changed and will even be deepened and more boldly carried out."

The Soviet-trained Jiang, a technocrat who is little known outside his Shanghai power base, was praised by the official media and a party communique as the man who could lead China out of the turmoil and uncertainty brought by the democracy protests.

An editorial in People's Daily said under Jiang's guidance "the new central leadership . . . would surely be able to lead the Chinese people."

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(Additional information)

Chinese pianist to perform at USU

An internationally acclaimed Chinese pianist will perform a benefit concert at Utah State University to aid the pro-democracy effort in his homeland, a student group says.

Xiangdong Kong, who learned to play the piano at age 5 when the art was forbidden in China, will perform Tuesday at the university's Fine Arts Center, said Yuenan Peng, past president of the USU Chinese Student Association.

Proceeds from the concert will be used to help foster communications between Chinese residents in the United States and their relatives back home, Peng said.

Kong won the bronze medal at the Tchaikovsky International piano competition in the Soviet Union at the age of 17. Two years later, he won the grand prize in the Gina Bachauer International competition in the United States and has since performed at New York's Lincoln Center and in several other countries.