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China's secret conclave begins in Beidaihe as leaders meet elders

President Xi faces scrutiny over US trade war and Hong Kong protests

The seaside resort of Beidaihe provides the venue for the annual review of China's leadership by party elders.   © Kyodo

BEIJING -- China's unofficial but highly influential annual gathering that brings together top Communist Party leaders and retired elder statesmen appeared to be underway Saturday in the seaside resort of Beidaihe, with the protracted trade war with the U.S. and the protests in Hong Kong likely topping the agenda.

In line with the annual tradition, the state-run Xinhua News Agency reported nonchalantly that members of the leadership were at an event in Beidaihe, hinting that the summer ritual had begun.

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