In communist countries, high-ranking officials would go missing frequently. Initial explanations were usually “tragic” accidents, such as falling from a 10th-floor balcony or the popular “car accident.”
It was often much simpler and bloodier when the truth came out decades later. Even today, Communist apparatchiks are known to die from a heart attack or take a headshot.
It is highly unusual that a member of China’s leadership and a close confidant of President Xi Jinping would go missing without an official explanation from Beijing. This is what happened to Qin Gang, the Foreign Minister. Qin, the former Chinese ambassador to the U.S., has missed many high-level meetings and conferences.
Yun Sun is the director of the Stimson Center’s China Program in Washington. He said that Qin’s disappearance casts much uncertainty and confusion about the consistency, stability, and credibility of Beijing’s decision-making. If a vice national-level leader disappears without explanation, it is difficult for people to trust or rely on any Chinese official or leader.
Wang Yi, a member of China’s highest-ranking foreign affairs official and a member of the Communist Party’s Politburo, took Qin’s position. Wang informed U.S. Secretary Antony Blinken of Qin’s absence due to “health issues.”
Wall Street Journal:
Qin was last seen in June when he met with counterparts from Vietnam, Sri Lanka, and Russia’s Rudenko Andrey Yorevich. This was shortly after the botched armed revolt that occurred in Russia. Qin had been scheduled to meet Josep Borell, the head of the European Union’s foreign policy in Beijing on the 10th of July. However, Beijing canceled the meeting five days prior without explanation.
Qin did not meet Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen when she visited Beijing at the beginning of July. He also missed meetings with U.S. Climate Envoy John Kerry who was scheduled to end a four-day trip to China on Tuesday.
Qin did not appear to be in any kind of political dispute with Xi. He ascended quickly through the Communist Party’s top leadership, moving from U.S. Ambassador to Foreign Minister in only two years.
There are whispers about Qin’s private life. Qin’s disappearance could be explained by a rumored extramarital relationship with a Hong Kong reporter who may have connections to British intelligence.
The Times reported that the diplomat had an extramarital relationship with a Hong Kong television personality named Fu Xiaotian. According to Asia Sentinel Xiaotian, a 40-year-old television personality in Hong Kong, is suspected of being a double agent and having links with British intelligence.
Xiaotian was a TV host at PhoenixTVHK and interviewed international celebrities. She interviewed Gang recently, and the “gesture” they used during the interview was slightly different. Her last tweet included three images of Gang’s interviews.
There are few details available about her husband. There were even reports that Qin was the father of her child.
Qin is more likely to have a cold.