China up close

Jiang Zemin emerges as unlikely idol for Chinese netizens

Former Chinese President Jiang Zemin © AP

KATSUJI NAKAZAWA, Nikkei senior staff writer

TOKYO -- In an unexpected phenomenon, Jiang Zemin, the former Chinese president who in the past has been unpopular and disparagingly referred to as "Toad" in the past, is now affectionately called "Elder" by many netizens in the country.

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