China opens Zhou ‘graft’ probe

China has begun investigating corruption cases surrounding Zhou Yongkang, the former president of China National Petroleum Corporation.

Reports of the impending probe into the former standing committee member of the Political Bureau of the Chinese Communist Party have been circulating in China for months before state media outlet Xinhua confirmed the development on Tuesday.

The Communist Party has decided to probe Zhou for suspected “serious disciplinary violations”, the news agency said in a brief report.

As is customary, the investigation is being handled by the party’s graft watchdog, the Central Commission for Discipline Inspection. Should Zhou be proved guilty, the case would be handed over the country’s judiciary.

Xinhua said that the decision on Zhou’s investigation was made in line with the party’s constitution and anti-corruption regulations.

The 71-year-old Zhou used to serve as the minister of the country’s upstream watchdog, the Ministry of Land and Resources.

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