Chinese Foreign Minister Qin Gang gestures after a press conference in Beijing, China, 07 March 2023. EFE-EPA FILE/MARK R. CRISTINO

No trace of China’s ousted minister Qin Gang left on foreign ministry website

Beijing, July 26 (EFE).- All mentions and photos of China’s former foreign minister Qin Gang, who was dismissed Tuesday and has missing from the public eye for a month, appear to have been removed from the foreign ministry’s website.

Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi attends a meeting with Australian Foreign Minister Penny Wong at Diaoyutai State Guesthouse in Beijing, China, 21 December 2022. EFE-EPA FILE/LUKAS COCH AUSTRALIA AND NEW ZEALAND OUT AUSTRALIA AND NEW ZEALAND OUT

Until Tuesday, the home page showed several links to information on Qin’s diplomatic activities, which had disappeared Wednesday morning.

Chinese Foreign Minister Qin Gang looks on during a press conference in Beijing, China, 07 March 2023. EFE-EPA FILE/MARK R. CRISTINO

In the section of the ministry’s leaders’ activities, now filled with news about the work of vice ministers Ma Chaoxu and Deng Li, mentions of Qin had also vanished.

Likewise, the search query “Qin Gang” does not produce any results.

Qin was dismissed Tuesday night by the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress (NPC) and replaced by his predecessor and China’s top diplomat Wang Yi.

On the ministry’s website, records of Wang’s activities in his previous stint as foreign minister (2013-2022) could still be seen, suggesting that deleting content relating to previous ministers is not standard practice.

The dismissal of Qin, former ambassador to the United States, came after his dramatic rise in December, when his stern tone ensured him the ministerial position, kicking off months of frenetic activity with China’s opening after its ‘zero-Covid’ policy ended.

The diplomat has not appeared in public since June 25, the day he met with officials from Sri Lanka, Russia and Vietnam in Beijing, and since then has been absent from several diplomatic events, arousing intense speculation about his whereabouts and situation. EFE