By Lobsang Tenchoe
DHARAMSALA, September 6: Chinese President Xi Jinping slips up and says “take off one’s clothes’’ while delivering a speech at the G20 Leaders’ Summit in Hangzhou; Beijing swiftly censored the phrase from social media as comments on the slip-up began to surface.
The Chinese President made the gaffe in his speech at the Business 20 (B20) summit on Saturday on the global economy. Xi said the phrase “take off one’s clothes” instead of “ease agricultural policy,” reports hongkongfp.com, Sept 6.
Quoting from an ancient Chinese text, President Xi was supposed to say “lighten the tariffs, straighten the roads, facilitate trade, and ease agricultural policy.” But because the simplified Chinese characters for clothes and agriculture look very similar, the phrase became ‘kuanyi’ instead of ‘kuannong,’ the report added.
Promptly reacting to the Chinese President’s slip up, Chinese cartoonist Badiucao posted a cartoon of Xi stripped to his underwear on a neon sign saying “facilitate trade and take off ones’ clothes.” And tweeted, “I think he means something like this…”
Xi dropped out of the middle school during China’s Cultural Revolution to work in the countryside of western Shaanxi province.
Although Xi studied Marxist theory and ideology education in Tsinghua University for four years (1998-2002) and obtained a doctorate degree in law, several critics, questioning his academic capability, even suggested his thesis may have been copied or written by others. Xi has never commented on the controversy, reports Voanews.com, Sept 05.
Politicians often misspeak, both in China and around the world. But this gaffe is reopening discussion of Xi’s education credentials, long a sensitive but widely discussed topic, the report concluded.