Today's date:
Spring 2013

The Rule of Law in China

Qiao Shi, Chairman of the National People’s Congress, in an
interview with Nathan Gardels at the Great Hall of the People in 1997.

An important reason why the Cultural Revolution took place and lasted 10 years was that we had not paid enough attention to improving democracy and the legal system.

It was from this bitter experience that, by the end of the 1970s, we began to stress the need to improve the legal system and laws, to maintain the stability and continuity of this system of law and make it very authoritative.

According to the constitution of China, all power in the country belongs to the people, and the people exercise state power through the National People’s Congress and local people’s congresses at various levels.

To ensure that the people are the real masters of the country, that state power is really in their hands, we must strengthen these institutions and give them full play. At the same time, it is necessary to improve grass-roots self-government so people can manage their own affairs...including giving autonomy in elections [for the People’s Congress] to both urban and rural residents.

No organization or individual has the prerogative to override the constitution or the law.”