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Chinese ex-general under probe for graft kills self

Former senior Chinese general Zhang Yang (file photo)

A former senior Chinese general under investigation for corruption has committed suicide, state media say.

China’s state news agency Xinhua and official broadcaster CCTV said on Tuesday that General Zhang Yang, who formerly served as the head of the People’s Liberation Army’s political affairs department, had committed suicide on November 23.

General Zhang had come under probe in late August on suspicion of having received bribes. Local reports said he owned a large amount of property that he had been unable to account for and had been involved in activities that “seriously violated” laws and regulations.

His body was found at his residence, where he had been placed under house arrest during the criminal investigation.

According to the reports, Chinese investigators began focusing on Zhang using testimony offered by two other senior army generals, indentified as Xu Caihou and Guo Bosiong.

All three top military officials, the reports said, had previously served as members of the leading Communist Party and government military commissions.

The development comes not long after Chinese President Xi Jinping vowed to continue his anti-corruption campaign during an address at the opening of the country’s Communist Party Congress last month.

“The fight against corruption has formed an overwhelming posture and strengthened in development,” President Xi said back then.

The Chinese president has launched an unyielding fight against deep-rooted corruption in the country since rising to power five years ago, with more than a million officials punished and dozens of former senior officials imprisoned.

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