Timeline: Chinese leader Xi Jinping’s rise and rule
A timeline of China’s Communist party leader Xi Jinping
He has been on the rise for more than 30 years
Xi leads China to a third-generation victory in key Asian contests
He has helped to transform a party he first led into a global force
From an under-educated peasant’s son to head of the world’s most powerful Communist Party, Xi Jinping is now the world’s top official and one of the world’s most wanted men.
The 44-year-old Communist Party general secretary, who became president in 2012, is also the leader of China, where he is a symbol of the party’s rise and the country’s modernization.
A leader of the world’s most populous nation, Xi’s rise could have global consequences for a nation that until now had been largely insulated from the world.
He became a member of the party Central Committee in 1998 at the age of 22. He was catapulted to vice president in 2002 when his father, Xi Zhongxun, became China’s sixth president. The younger Xi rose to general secretary in 2008 and later became party supremo in 2012.
“Xi Jinping is a powerful and charismatic leader, who is ready to make history,” Stephen Walt, an influential American historian of China, writes in a recent New York Times op-ed.
The youngest leader in the Chinese Communist Party, Xi’s ascent could mark an historic breakthrough in the Communist Chinese leadership, whose history is often shaped by the experience of Mao Zedong and Deng Xiaoping. But Xi’s rise has also been marked by an ongoing struggle for domination — a challenge that China’s Communist Party chief has acknowledged as central to the country’s development.
A global figure
Born in 1978 in Sichuan province to the ruling party elite, Xi was the youngest of seven children. His father was the Communist Party’s most important figure, known as “Mr.