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Sex party photos of officials leave China red-faced

Beijing, Aug 17: The Communist Party of China is trying to fight back what it regards as a smear campaign about its senior officials indulging in a "sex party" after photographs of a sexual orgy
PTI August 18, 2012 10:38 IST
PTI
Beijing, Aug 17: The Communist Party of China is trying to fight back what it regards as a smear campaign about its senior officials indulging in a "sex party" after photographs of a sexual orgy involving three naked men and two women went viral on the Chinese internet, forcing the party to make a rebuttal.



 
What's worrying the party is the ability of the alleged hackers to break through the tight controls of the government censors to post the photographs of officials of Lujiang county in Anhui province. Millions saw pictures of the five people in a cinch, which were then posted on China's microblogging site, Sina Weibo, with hundreds of people commenting on them.
 
The allegations and pictures touched a chord among internet users who downloaded them at hectic pace over the past few days. "The Lujiang incident is just a microcosm of China's corrupted society," one Weibo user wrote.
 
The incident comes soon after Xi Jinping, the country's vice president who is expected to become the next president , hit out at "pleasure seeking" officials who had fallen into an "abyss of luxury and corruption" . Xi warned there was widespread public dissatisfaction with politicians who pursued "individual pleasure" .
 
Even the official Chinese media is divided on the issue. The Global Times said the allegations of "group licentiousness" had released pent up frustration at China's political leaders. But People's Daily has run reports saying the allegations are false.
 
The Lujiang county committee said the pictures are not of "comrades in charge" at the county. It described the distribution of the pictures as a "malicious slander," according to the party mouthpiece, the People's Daily, which ran a report with the, "Naked guy is not our Party chief ".
 
One of the officials, the Lujiang party secretary Wang, said he suspected that "false allegations" against him had been sparked off because he was engaged in exposing a serious case of corruption. The local government has ordered a probe into the case, the Global Times said citing a police officer with the Lujiang county public security bureau.
 
"There is a simmering hatred for officials, and some undisciplined officials have obviously undermined the image of the whole group," Ren Jianming, a professor from Tsinghua University, told the Global Times.