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Constitution of the People’s Republic of China – The U.S. Constitution Online – USConstitution.net

Constitution of the People’s Republic of China

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The following is the complete text of the Constitution of the People’s
Republic of China, as adopted on December 4, 1982. The electronic text was
acquired from the The Wiretap Electronic
Text Archive
and was marked up for Web display by Steve
Mount
. If you are aware of any changes to the Constitution that are not
reflected on this page, please let us know.
Amendments were found on an official
Chinese Web Site
.

The Constitution of China is presented for comparison purposes with that of
the United States.


The only term I came across that was unknown to me is “Procuratorate.” A
procuratorate is a part of the judiciary that actually enforces laws. They are
the equivalent of prosecutors in the United States, except that they have
special constitutional status.

The first version of the Chinese constitution presented here was that of
December 4, 1982. The constitution’s First Amendment was approved on April 12,
1988. The Second Amendment was approved on March 29, 1993. The Third Amendment
was approved on Marh 15, 1999. The Fourth Amendment was approved on March 14,
2004. This electronic copy is as correct a reproduction of the 2004 version as
possible. All amendments have been incorporated into the text.


Contents


The Constitution of the People’s Republic of China

Preamble

China is a country with one of the longest histories in the world. The
people of all of China’s nationalities have jointly created a culture of
grandeur and have a glorious revolutionary tradition.

After 1840, feudal China was gradually turned into a semi-colonial and semi-
feudal country. The Chinese people waged many successive heroic struggles for
national independence and liberation and for democracy and freedom.

Great and earthshaking historical changes have taken place in China in the
20th century.

The Revolution of 1911, led by Dr. Sun Yat-sen, abolished the feudal
monarchy and gave birth to the Republic of China. But the historic mission of
the Chinese people to overthrow imperialism and feudalism remained
unaccomplished.

After waging protracted and arduous struggles, armed and otherwise, along a
zigzag course, the Chinese people of all nationalities led by the Communist
Party of China with Chairman Mao Zedong as its leader ultimately, in 1949,
overthrew the rule of imperialism, feudalism and bureaucrat-capitalism, won a
great victory in the New-Democratic Revolution and founded the People’s
Republic of China. Since then the Chinese people have taken control of state
power and become masters of the country.

After founding the People’s Republic, China gradually achieved its
transition from a New-Democratic to a socialist society. The socialist
transformation of the private ownership of the means of production has been
completed, the system of exploitation of man by man abolished and the socialist
system established. The people’s democratic dictatorship held by the working
class and based on the alliance of workers and peasants, which is in essence
the dictatorship of the proletariat, has been consolidated and developed. The
Chinese people and the Chinese People’s Liberation Army have defeated
imperialist and hegemonist aggression, sabotage and armed provocations and have
thereby safeguarded China’s national independence and security and strengthened
its national defense. Major successes have been achieved in economic
development. An independent and relatively comprehensive socialist system of
industry has basically been established. There has been a marked increase in
agricultural production. Significant advances have been made in educational,
scientific and cultural undertakings, while education in socialist ideology has
produced noteworthy results. The life of the people has improved
considerably.

Both the victory of China’s new-democratic revolution and the successes of
its socialist cause have been achieved by the Chinese people of all
nationalities under the leadership of the Communist Party of China and the
guidance of Marxism-Leninism and Mao Zedong Thought, and by upholding truth,
correcting errors and overcoming numerous difficulties and hardships. China will
stay in the primary stage of socialism for a long period of time. The basic task
of the nation is to concentrate its efforts on socialist modernization by
following the road of Chinese-style socialism. Under the leadership of the
Communist Party of China and the guidance of Marxism-Leninism, Mao Zedong
Thought, Deng Xiaoping Theory, and the important thought of the “Three
Represents,” the Chinese people of all nationalities will continue to adhere to
the people’s democratic dictatorship, follow the socialist road, persist in
reform and opening-up, steadily improve socialist institutions, develop a
socialist market economy, advance socialist democracy, improve the socialist
legal system and work hard and self-reliantly to modernize industry,
agriculture, national defense and science and technology step by step, promote
the co-ordinated development of the material, political and spiritual
civilizations to turn China into a powerful and prosperous socialist country
with a high level of culture and democracy.

The exploiting classes as such have been abolished in our country. However,
class struggle will continue to exist within certain bounds for a long time to
come. The Chinese people must fight against those forces and elements, both at
home and abroad, that are hostile to China’s socialist system and try to
undermine it.

Taiwan is part of the sacred territory of the People’s Republic of China. It
is the inviolable duty of all Chinese people, including our compatriots in
Taiwan, to accomplish the great task of reunifying the motherland.

In building socialism it is essential to rely on workers, peasants and
intellectuals and to unite all forces that can be united. In the long years of
revolution and construction, there has been formed under the leadership of the
Communist Party of China a broad patriotic united front which is composed of the
democratic parties and people’s organizations and which embraces all socialist
working people, all builders of socialism, all patriots who support socialism
and all patriots who stand for the reunification of the motherland. This united
front will continue to be consolidated and developed. The Chinese People’s
Political Consultative Conference, a broadly based representative organization
of the united front which has played a significant historical role, will play a
still more important role in the country’s political and social life, in
promoting friendship with other countries and in the struggle for socialist
modernization and for the reunification and unity of the country. Multi-party
cooperation and the political consultation system under the leadership of the
Communist Party of China shall continue and develop for the extended future. The
system of multi-party cooperation and political consultation led by the
Communist Party of China will exist and develop in China for a long time to
come.

The People’s Republic of China is a unitary multi-national state created
jointly by the people of all its nationalities. Socialist relations of
equality, unity and mutual assistance have been established among the
nationalities and will continue to be strengthened. In the struggle to
safeguard the unity of the nationalities, it is necessary to combat big-nation
chauvinism, mainly Han chauvinism, and to combat local national chauvinism. The
state will do its utmost to promote the common prosperity of all the
nationalities.

China’s achievements in revolution and construction are inseparable from the
support of the people of the world. The future of China is closely linked to
the future of the world. China consistently carries out an independent foreign
policy and adheres to the five principles of mutual respect for sovereignty and
territorial integrity, mutual non-aggression, non-interference in each other’s
internal affairs, equality and mutual benefit, and peaceful coexistence in
developing diplomatic relations and economic and cultural exchanges with other
countries. China consistently opposes imperialism, hegemonism and colonialism,
works to strengthen unity with people of other countries, supports the
oppressed nations and the developing countries in their just struggle to win
and preserve national independence and develop national economies, and strives
to safeguard world peace and promote the cause of human progress.

This Constitution, in legal form, affirms the achievements of the struggles
of the Chinese people of all nationalities and defines the basic system and
basic tasks of the state; it is the fundamental law of the state and has
supreme legal authority. The people of all nationalities, all state organs, the
armed forces, all political parties and public organizations and all
enterprises and institutions in the country must take the Constitution as the
basic standard of conduct, and they have the duty to uphold the dignity of the
Constitution and ensure its implementation.


CHAPTER I. General
Principles

Article 1. Socialist state

The People’s Republic of China is a socialist state under the people’s
democratic dictatorship led by the working class and based on the alliance of
workers and peasants.

The socialist system is the basic system of the People’s Republic of China.
Disruption of the socialist system by any organization or individual is
prohibited.

Article 2. Power belongs to the
people

All power in the People’s Republic of China belongs to the people.

The National People’s Congress and the local people’s congresses at various
levels are the organs through which the people exercise state power.

The people administer state affairs and manage economic, cultural and social
affairs through various channels and in various ways in accordance with the
law.

Article 3. Democracy

The state organs of the People’s Republic of China apply the principle of
democratic centralism.

The National People’s Congress and the local people’s congresses at various
levels are constituted through democratic elections. They are responsible to
the people and subject to their supervision.

All administrative, judicial and procuratorial organs of the state are
created by the people’s congresses to which they are responsible and by which
they are supervised.

The divisions of functions and powers between the central and local state
organs is guided by the principle of giving full scope to the initiative and
enthusiasm of the local authorities under the unified leadership of the central
authorities.

Article 4. Minority rights

All nationalities in the People’s Republic of China are equal. The state
protects the lawful rights and interests of the minority nationalities and
upholds and develops a relationship of equality, unity and mutual assistance
among all of China’s nationalities. Discrimination against and oppression of
any nationality are prohibited; any act which undermines the unity of the
nationalities or instigates division is prohibited.

The state assists areas inhabited by minority nationalities accelerating
their economic and cultural development according to the characteristics and
needs of the various minority nationalities.

Regional autonomy is practiced in areas where people of minority
nationalities live in concentrated communities; in these areas organs of self-
government are established to exercise the power of autonomy. All national
autonomous areas are integral parts of the People’s Republic of China.

All nationalities have the freedom to use and develop their own spoken and
written languages and to preserve or reform their own folkways and customs.

Article 5. Constitutional
supremacy

The People’s Republic of China practices ruling the country in accordance
with the law and building a socialist country of law.

The state upholds the uniformity and dignity of the socialist legal
system.

No laws or administrative or local rules and regulations may contravene the
Constitution.

All state organs, the armed forces, all political parties and public
organizations and all enterprises and institutions must abide by the
Constitution and the law. All acts in violation of the Constitution and the law
must be investigated.

No organization or individual is privileged to be beyond the Constitution or
the law.

Article 6. Socialist supremacy

The basis of the socialist economic system of the People’s Republic of China
is socialist public ownership of the means of production, namely, ownership by
the whole people and collective ownership by the working people. The system of
socialist public ownership supersedes the system of exploitation of man by man;
it applies the principle of ‘from each according to his ability, to each
according to his work’.

During the primary stage of socialism, the State adheres to the basic
economic system with the public ownership remaining dominant and diverse sectors
of the economy developing side by side, and to the distribution system with the
distribution according to work remaining dominant and the coexistence of a
variety of modes of distribution.

Article 7. State economy

The State-owned economy, that is, the socialist economy under ownership by
the whole people, is the leading force in the national economy. The State
ensures the consolidation and growth of the State-owned economy.

Article 8. Communes and
collectives

Rural collective economic organizations practice the double-tier management
system that combines unified and separate operations on the basis of the
household-based output-related contracted responsibility system. Various forms
of the cooperative economy in rural areas such as producers’, supply and
marketing, credit and consumers’ cooperatives belong to the sector of the
socialist economy under collective ownership by the working people.

Working people who are members of rural economic collectives have the right,
within the limits prescribed by law, to farm plots of cropland and hilly land
allotted for private use, engage in household sideline production and raise
privately owned livestock.

The various forms of cooperative economy in the cities and towns, such as
those in the handicraft, industrial, building, transport, commercial and
service trades, all belong to the sector of socialist economy under collective
ownership by the working people.

The state protects the lawful rights and interests of the urban and rural
economic collectives and encourages, guides and helps the growth of the
collective economy.

Article 9. Natural resources

All mineral resources, waters, forests, mountains, grasslands, unreclaimed
land, beaches, and other natural resources are owned by the state, that is, by
the whole people, with the exception of the forest, mountains, grasslands and
unreclaimed land and beaches that are owned by collectives in accordance with
the law.

The state ensures the rational use of natural resources and protects rare
animals and plants. Appropriation or damaging natural resources by any
organization or individual by whatever means is prohibited.

Article 10. Ownership of land

Land in cities is owned by the state.

Land in the rural and suburban areas is owned by collectives except for
those portions which belong to the state in accordance with the law; house
sites and privately farmed plots of cropland and hilly land are also owned by
collectives.

The State may, in the public interest and in accordance with the provisions
of law, expropriate or requisition land for its use and shall make compensation
for the land expropriated or requisitioned.

No organization or individual may appropriate, buy, sell or unlawfully
transfer land in other ways. The right to the use of the land may be
transferred in accordance with the law.

All organizations and individuals using land must ensure its rational
use.

Article 11. Private economy

Individual, private and other non-public economies that exist within the
limits prescribed by law are major components of the socialist market
economy.

The State protects the lawful rights and interests of the non-public sectors
of the economy such as the individual and private sectors of the economy. The
State encourages, supports and guides the development of the non-public sectors
of the economy and, in accordance with law, exercises supervision and control
over the non-public sectors of the economy.

Article 12. Public property

Socialist public property is inviolable.

The state protects socialist property. Appropriation or damaging of state or
collective property by any organization or individual by whatever means is
prohibited.

Article 13. Private property,
inheritance

Citizens’ lawful private property is inviolable.

The State, in accordance with law, protects the rights of citizens to private
property and to its inheritance.

The State may, in the public interest and in accordance with law, expropriate
or requisition private property for its use and shall make compensation for the
private property expropriated or requisitioned.

Article 14. Economic
improvement

The state continuously raises labor productivity, improves economic results
and develops the productive forces by enhancing the enthusiasm of the working
people, raising the level of their technical skill, disseminating advanced
science and technology, improving the systems of economic administration and
enterprise operation and management, instituting the socialist system of
responsibility in various forms and improving the organization of work.

The state practices strict economy and combats waste.

The state properly apportions accumulation and consumption, concerns itself
with the interests of the collective and the individual as well as of the state
and, on the basis of expanded production, gradually improves the material and
cultural life of the people.

The State establishes a sound social security system compatible with the
level of economic development.

Article 15. Economic planning

The state has put into practice a socialist market economy. The State
strengthens formulating economic laws, improves macro adjustment and control and
forbids according to law any units or individuals from interfering with the
social economic order.

Article 16. State-owned
enterprise

Stated-owned enterprises have decision-making power in operation and
management within the limits prescribed by law. State-owned enterprises practice
democratic management through congresses of workers and staff and in other ways
in accordance with the law.

Article 17. Collective-owned
enterprise

Collective economic organizations have decision-making power in conducting
independent economic activities, on condition that they abide by the relevant
laws. Collective economic organizations practice democratic management, elect or
remove their managerial personnel and decide on major issue concerning operation
and management according to law.

Article 18. Foreign investment

The People’s Republic of China permits foreign enterprises, other foreign
economic organizations and individual foreigners to invest in China and to
enter into various forms of economic cooperation with Chinese enterprises and
other Chinese economic organizations in accordance with the law of the People’s
Republic of China.

All foreign enterprises, other foreign economic organizations as well as
Chinese-foreign joint ventures within Chinese territory shall abide by the law
of the People’s Republic of China.

Article 19. Education

The state undertakes the development of socialist education and works to
raise the scientific and cultural level of the whole nation.

The state establishes and administers schools of various types,
universalizes compulsory primary education and promotes secondary, vocational
and higher education as well as pre-school education.

The state develops educational facilities in order to eliminate illiteracy
and provide political, scientific, technical and professional education as well
as general education for workers, peasants, state functionaries and other
working people. It encourages people to become educated through independent
study.

The state encourages the collective economic organizations, state
enterprises and institutions and other sectors of society to establish
educational institutions of various types in accordance with the law.

The state promotes the development of natural and social sciences,
disseminates knowledge of science and technology, and commends and rewards
achievements in scientific research as well as technological innovations and
inventions.

Article 20. Science and
technology

deleted

Article 21. Medicine and
fitness

The state develops medical and health services, promotes modern medicine and
traditional Chinese medicine, encourages and supports the setting up of various
medical and health facilities by the rural economic collectives, state
enterprises and institutions and neighborhood organizations, and promotes
health and sanitation activities of a mass character, all for the protection of
the people’s health.

The state develops physical culture and promotes mass sports activities to
improve the people’s physical fitness.

Article 22. Art, mass media, and
culture

The state promotes the development of art and literature, the press, radio
and television broadcasting, publishing and distribution services, libraries,
museums, cultural centers and other cultural undertakings that serve the people
and socialism, and it sponsors mass cultural activities.

The state protects sites of scenic and historical interest, valuable
cultural monuments and relics and other significant items of China’s historical
and cultural heritage.

Article 23. State training to serve
socialism

The state trains specialized personnel in all fields who serve socialism,
expands the ranks of intellectuals and creates conditions to give full scope to
their role in socialist modernization.

Article 24. Teaching in morality and
patriotism

The state strengthens the building of a socialist society with an advanced
culture and ideology by promoting education in high ideals, ethics, general
knowledge, discipline and legality, and by promoting the formulation and
observance of rules of conduct and common pledges by various sections of the
people in urban and rural areas.

Article 25. Family planning

The state promotes family planning so that population growth may fit the
plans for economic and social development.

Article 26. Pollution control,
forests

The state protects and improves the environment in which people live and the
ecological environment. It prevents and controls pollution and other public
hazards.

The state organizes and encourages afforestation and the protection of
forests.

Article 27. Responsibilty of
work

All state organs carry out the principle of simple and efficient
administration, the system of responsibility for work and the system of
training functionaries and appraising their performance in order constantly to
improve the quality of work and efficiency and combat bureaucratism.

Article 28. Maintaining order

The State maintains public order and suppresses treasonable and other
criminal activities that endanger State security; it penalizes actions that
endanger public security and disrupt the socialist economy and other criminal
activities, and punishes and reforms criminals.

Article 29. Armed forces

The armed forces of the People’s Republic of China belong to the people.
Their tasks are to strengthen national defense, resist aggression, defend the
motherland, safeguard the people’s peaceful labor, participate in national
reconstruction and do their best to serve the people.

Article 30. Governmental
divisions

The administrative division of the People’s Republic of China is as
follows:

1)The country is divided into provinces, autonomous regions and
municipalities directly under the Central Government;

2)Provinces and autonomous regions are divided into autonomous prefectures,
counties, autonomous counties, and cities;

3)Counties and autonomous counties are divided into townships, nationality
townships, and towns.

Municipalities directly under the Central Government and other large cities
are divided into districts and counties. Autonomous prefectures are divided
into counties, autonomous counties, and cities.

All autonomous regions, autonomous prefectures and autonomous counties are
national autonomous areas.

Article 31. Special administrative
regions

The state may establish special administrative regions when necessary. The
systems to be instituted in special administrative regions shall be prescribed
by law enacted by the National People’s Congress in the light of the specific
conditions.

Article 32. Protection of right of
foreigners

The People’s Republic of China protects the lawful rights and interests of
foreigners within Chinese territory; foreigners on Chinese territory must abide
by the laws of the People’s Republic of China.

The People’s Republic of China may grant asylum to foreigners who request it
for political reasons.


CHAPTER II. The
Fundamental Rights and Duties of Citizens

Article 33. Citizenship

All persons holding the nationality of the People’s Republic of China are
citizens of the People’s Republic of China.

All citizens of the People’s Republic of China are equal before the law.

Every citizen is entitled to the rights and at the same time must perform
the duties prescribed by the Constitution and the law.

The State respects and preserves human rights.

Article 34. Voting requirements

All citizens of the People’s Republic of China who have reached the age of
18 have the right to vote and stand for election, regardless of ethnic status,
race, sex, occupation, family background, religious belief, education, property
status or length of residence, except persons deprived of political rights
according to law.

Article 35. Freedom of speech, press,
assembly

Citizens of the People’s Republic of China enjoy freedom of speech, of the
press, of assembly, of association, of procession and of demonstration.

Article 36. Religious freedom

Citizens of the People’s Republic of China enjoy freedom of religious
belief.

No state organ, public organization or individual may compel citizens to
believe in, or not believe in, any religion; nor may they discriminate against
citizens who believe in, or do not believe in, any religion.

The state protects normal religious activities. No one may make use of
religion to engage in activities that disrupt public order, impair the health
of citizens or interfere with the educational system of the state.

Religious bodies and religious affairs are not subject to any foreign
domination.

Article 37. Freedom of person

Freedom of the person of citizens of the People’s Republic of China is
inviolable.

No citizens may be arrested except with the approval or by decision of a
people’s procuratorate or by decision of a people’s court, and arrests must be
made by a public security organ.

Unlawful detention or deprivation or restriction of citizens’ freedom of the
person by other means is prohibited, and unlawful search of the person of
citizens is prohibited.

Article 38. Freedom from insult

The personal dignity of citizens of the People’s Republic of China is
inviolable. Insult, libel, false accusation or false incrimination directed
against citizens by any means is prohibited.

Article 39. Inviolability of the
home

The residences of citizens of the People’s Republic of China are inviolable.
Unlawful search of, or intrusion into, a citizen’s residence is prohibited.

Article 40. Privacy of
correspondence

Freedom and privacy of correspondence of citizens of the People’s Republic
of China are protected by law. No organization or individual may, on any
ground, infringe on citizens’ freedom of privacy of correspondence, except in
cases where to meet the needs of state security or of criminal investigation,
public security or procuratorial organs are permitted to censor correspondence
in accordance with procedures prescribed by law.

Article 41. Right to petition the
state

Citizens of the People’s Republic of China have the right to criticize and
make suggestions regarding any state organ or functionary. Citizens have the
right to make to relevant state organs complaints or charges against, or
exposures of, any state organ or functionary for violation of the law or
dereliction of duty, but fabrication or distortion of facts for purposes of
libel or false incrimination is prohibited.

The state organ concerned must deal with complaints, charges or exposures
made by citizens in a responsible manner after ascertaining the facts. No one
may suppress such complaints, charges and exposures or retaliate against the
citizens making them.

Citizens who have suffered losses as a result of infringement of their civic
rights by any state organ or functionary have the right to compensation in
accordance with the law.

Article 42. Right and duty to
work

Citizens of the People’s Republic of China have the right as well as the
duty to work.

Through various channels, the state creates conditions for employment,
enhances occupational safety and health, improves working conditions and, on
the basis of expanded production, increases remuneration for work and welfare
benefits.

Work is the glorious duty of every able-bodied citizen. All working people in
State-owned enterprises and in urban and rural economic collectives should
perform their tasks with an attitude consonant with their status as masters of
the country. The State promotes socialist labor emulation, and commends and
rewards model and advanced workers. The State encourages citizens to take part
in voluntary labor.

The state provides necessary vocational training for citizens before they
are employed.

Article 43. Right to rest

Working people in the People’s Republic of China have the right to rest.

The state expands facilities for the rest and recuperation of the working
people and prescribes working hours and vacations for workers and staff.

Article 44. Protection of
retirement

The state applies the system of retirement for workers and staff of
enterprises and institutions and for functionaries of organs of state according
to law. The livelihood of retried personnel is ensured by the state and
society.

Article 45. Protection of old, ill,
disabled

Citizens of the People’s Republic of China have the right to material
assistance from the state and society when they are old, ill or disabled. The
state develops social insurance, social relief and medical and health services
that are required for citizens to enjoy this right.

The state and society ensure the livelihood of disabled members of the armed
forces, provides pensions to the families of martyrs and gives preferential
treatment to the families of military personnel.

The state and society help make arrangements for the work, livelihood and
education of the blind, deaf-mutes and other handicapped citizens.

Article 46. Right to and duty of
education

Citizens of the People’s Republic of China have the right as well as the
duty to receive education.

The state promotes the all-round development of children and young people,
morally, intellectually and physically.

Article 47. Right to pursue art,
science

Citizens of the People’s Republic of China have the freedom to engage in
scientific research, literary and artistic creation and other cultural
pursuits. The state encourages and assists creative endeavours conducive to the
interests of the people that are made by citizens engaged in education,
science, technology, literature, art and other cultural work.

Article 48. Equal rights for
women

Women in the People’s Republic of China enjoy equal rights with men in all
spheres of life, political, economic, cultural, social, and family life.

The state protects the rights and interests of women, applies the principle
of equal pay for equal work for men and women alike and trains and selects
cadres from among women.

Article 49. Protection of marriage and
family

Marriage, the family and mother and child are protected by the state.

Both husband and wife have the duty to practice family planning.

Parents have the duty to rear and educate their children who are minors, and
children who have come of age have the duty to support and assist their
parents.

Violation of the freedom of marriage is prohibited. Maltreatment of old
people, women and children is prohibited.

Article 50. Protection of Chinese while
overseas

The People’s Republic of China protects the legitimate rights and interests
of Chinese nationals residing abroad and protects the lawful rights and
interests of returned overseas Chinese and of the family members of Chinese
nationals residing abroad.

Article 51. Non-infringement of
rights

Citizens of the People’s Republic of China, in exercising their freedoms and
rights, may not infringe upon the interests of the state, of society or of the
collective, or upon the lawful freedoms and rights of other citizens.

Article 52. Duty to safeguard
unity

It is the duty of citizens of the People’s Republic of China to safeguard
the unification of the country and the unity of all its nationalities.

Article 53. Duty to uphold
Constitution

Citizens of the People’s Republic of China must abide by the constitution
and the law, keep state secrets, protect public property and observe labour
discipline and public order and respect social ethics.

Article 54. Duty to honor the
motherland

It is the duty of citizens of the People’s Republic of China to safeguard
the security, honour and interests of the motherland; they must not commit acts
detrimental to the security, honour and interests of the motherland.

Article 55. Duty to defend the
motherland

It is the sacred duty of every citizen of the People’s Republic of China to
defend the motherland and resist aggression.

It is the honorable duty of citizens of the People’s Republic of China to
perform military service and join the militia in accordance with the law.

Article 56. Duty to pay taxes

It is the duty of citizens of the People’s Republic of China to pay taxes in
accordance with the law.


CHAPTER III. The
Structure of the State

§ 1. The National People’s
Congress

Article 57. Stature

The National People’s Congress of the People’s Republic of China is the
highest organ of state power. Its permanent body is the Standing Committee of
the National People’s Congress.

Article 58. Legislative Power

The National People’s Congress and its Standing Committee exercise the
legislative power of the state.

Article 59. Composition

The National People’s Congress is composed of deputies elected from the
provinces, autonomous regions, municipalities directly under the Central
Government, and the special administrative regions, and of deputies elected from
the armed forces. All the minority nationalities are entitled to appropriate
representation.

Election of deputies to the National People’s Congress is conducted by the
Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress.

The number of deputies to the National People’s Congress and the procedure
of their election are prescribed by law.

Article 60. Term

The National People’s Congress is elected for a term of five years.

The Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress must ensure the
completion of election of deputies to the succeeding National People’s Congress
two months prior to the expiration of the term of office of the current
National People’s Congress. Should extraordinary circumstances prevent such an
election, it may be postponed and the term of office of the current National
People’s Congress extended by the decision of a vote of more than two-thirds of
all those on the Standing Committee of the current National People’s Congress.
The election of deputies to the succeeding National People’s Congress must be
completed within one year after the termination of such extraordinary
circumstances.

Article 61. Annual session

The National People’s Congress meets in session once a year and is convened
by its Standing Committee. A session of the National People’s Congress may be
convened at any time the Standing Committee deems it necessary or when more
than one-fifth of the deputies to the National People’s Congress so
propose.

When the National People’s Congress meets, it elects a Presidium to conduct
its session.

Article 62. Enumerated powers

The National People’s Congress exercises the following functions and powers:

(1) to amend the Constitution;

(2) to supervise the enforcement of the Constitution;

(3) to enact and amend basic laws governing criminal offenses, civil affairs,
the state organs and other matters;

(4) to elect the President and the Vice President of the People’s Republic of
China;

(5) to decide on the choice of the Premier of the State Council upon nomination
by the President of the People’s Republic of China, and on the choice of the
Vice Premiers, State Councilors, Ministers in charge of ministries or
commissions, the Auditor General and the Secretary General of the State Council
upon nomination by the Premier;

(6) to elect the Chairman of the Central Military Commission and, upon,
nomination by the Chairman, to decide on the choice of all other members of the
Central Military Commission;

(7) to elect the President of the Supreme People’s Court;

(8) to elect the Procurator General of the Supreme People’s Procuratorate;

(9) to examine and approve the plan for national economic and social
development and the report on its implementation;

(10) to examine and approve the state budget and the report on its
implementation;

(11) to alter or annul inappropriate decisions of the Standing Committee of the
National People’s Congress;

(12) to approve the establishment of provinces, autonomous regions, and
municipalities directly under the Central Government;

(13) to decide on the establishment of special administrative regions and the
systems to be instituted there;

(14) to decide on questions of war and peace; and

(15) to exercise such other functions and powers as the highest organ of state
power should exercise.

Article 63. Power of recall

The National People’s Congress has the power to remove from office the
following persons:

(1) the President and Vice President of the People’s Republic of China;

(2) the Premier, Vice Premiers, State Councilors, Ministers in charge of
ministries or commissions, the Auditor General and the Secretary General of the
State Council;

(3) the Chairman of the Central Military Commission and other members of the
Commission;

(4) the President of the Supreme People’s Court; and

(5) the Procurator General of the Supreme People’s Procuratorate.

Article 64. Amending
Constitution

Amendments to the Constitution are to be proposed by the Standing Committee
of the National People’s Congress or by more than one-fifth of the deputies of
the National People’s Congress and adopted by a vote of more than two-thirds of
all the deputies to the Congress.

Laws and resolutions are to be adopted by a majority vote of all deputies to
the National People’s Congress.

Article 65. Composition of Standing
Committee

The Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress is composed of the
following:

the Chairman; the Vice Chairmen; the Secretary-General; and the members.

Minority nationalities are entitled to appropriate representation on the
Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress.

The National People’s Congress elects, and has the power to recall, members
of its Standing Committee.

No one on the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress shall
hold office in any of the administrative, judicial or procuratorial organs of
the state.

Article 66. Term of Standing
Committee

The Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress is elected for the
same term of the National People’s Congress; it shall exercise its functions
and powers until a new Standing Committee is elected by the succeeding National
People’s Congress.

The Chairman and Vice Chairman of the Standing Committee shall serve no more
than two consecutive terms.

Article 67. Enumerated powers of Standing
Committee

The Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress exercises the
following functions and powers:

(1) to interpret the Constitution and supervise its enforcement;

(2) to enact and amend laws, with the exception of those which should be
enacted by the National People’s Congress;

(3) to partially supplement and amend, when the National People’s Congress is
not in session, laws enacted by the National People’s Congress provided that
the basic principles of those laws are not contravened;

(4) to interpret laws;

(5) to review and approve, when the National People’s Congress is not in
session, partial adjustments to the plan for national economic and social
development or to the state budget that prove necessary in the course of their
implementation;

(6) to supervise the work of the State Council, the Central Military
Commission, the Supreme People’s Court and the Supreme People’s
Procuratorate;

(7) to annul those administrative rules and regulations, decisions or orders of
the State Council that contravene the Constitution or the law;

(8) to annual those local regulations or decisions of the organs of state power
of provinces, autonomous regions, and municipalities directly under the Central
Government that contravene the Constitution, the law or the administrative
rules and regulations;

(9) to decide, when the National People’s Congress is not in session, on the
choice of Ministers in charge of ministries or commissions, the Auditor General
or the Secretary General of the State Council upon nomination by the Premier of
the State Council;

(10) to decide, upon nomination by the Chairman of the Central Military
Commission, on the choice of other members of the Commission, when the National
People’s Congress is not in session;

(11) to appoint or remove, at the recommendation of the President of the
Supreme People’s Court, the Vice Presidents and Judges of the Supreme People’s
Court, members of its Judicial Committee and the President of the Military
Court;

(12) to appoint or remove, at the recommendation of the Procurator General of
the Supreme People’s Procuratorate, the Deputy Procurators-General and
procurators of the Supreme People’s Procuratorate, members of its Procuratorial
Committee and the Chief Procurator of the Military Procuratorate, and to
approve the appointment or removal of the chief procurators of the people’s
procuratorates of provinces, autonomous regions, and municipalities directly
under the Central Government;

(13) to decide on the appointment or recall of plenipotentiary representatives
abroad;

(14) to decide on the ratification or abrogation of treaties and important
agreements concluded with foreign states;

(15) to institute systems of titles and ranks for military and diplomatic
personnel and of other specific titles and ranks;

(16) to institute state medals and titles of honor and decide on their
conferment;

(17) to decide on the granting of special pardons;

(18) to decide, when the National People’s Congress is not in session, on the
proclamation of the state of war in the event or an armed attack on the country
or in fulfillment of international treaty obligations concerning common defense
against aggression;

(19) to decide on general mobilization or partial mobilization;

(20) to decide on entering the state of emergency throughout the country or in
particular provinces, autonomous regions, or municipalities directly under the
Central Government; and

(21) to exercise such other functions and powers as the National People’s
Congress may assign to it.

Article 68. Chairman of the Standing
Committee

The Chairman of the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress
directs the work of the Standing Committee and convenes its meeting. The Vice
Chairmen and the Secretary-General assist the Chairman in his work.

The Chairman, the Vice Chairmen and the Secretary-General constitute the
Council of Chairmen which handles the important day-to-day work of the Standing
Committee of the National People’s Congress.

Article 69. Standing Committee reports to
Congress

The Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress is responsible to
the National People’s Congress and reports on its work to the Congress.

Article 70. Other Committees

The National People’s Congress establishes a Nationalities Committee, a Law
Committee, a Finance and Economic Committee, an Education, Science, Culture and
Public Health Committee, a Foreign Affairs Committee, an Overseas Chinese
Committee and such other special committees as are necessary. These special
committees work under the direction of the Standing Committee of the National
People’s Congress when the Congress is not in session.

The special committees examine, discuss and draw up relevant bills and draft
resolutions under the direction of the National People’s Congress and its
Standing Committee.

Article 71. Committees of
inquiry

The National People’s Congress and its Standing Committee, when they deem
necessary, appoint committees of inquiry into special questions and adopt
relevant resolutions in the light of their reports.

All organs of state, public organizations and citizens concerned are obliged
to furnish when necessary information to the committees of inquiry when they
conduct investigations.

Article 72. Right to submit
bills

Deputies to the National People’s Congress and members of its Standing
Committee have the right, in accordance with the procedures prescribed by law,
to submit bills and proposals within the scope of the respective functions and
powers of the National People’s Congress and its Standing Committee.

Article 73. Right to question

Deputies to the National People’s Congress and members of its Standing
Committee have the right, during the sessions of Congress and the meetings of
the Committee, to address questions, in accordance with procedures prescribed
by law, to the State Council or the ministries and commissions under the State
Council, which must answer the questions in a responsible manner.

Article 74. Freedom from arrest

No deputy to the National People’s Congress may be arrested or placed on
criminal trial without the consent of the Presidium of the current session of
the National People’s Congress or, when the National People’s Congress is not
in session, without the consent of its Standing Committee.

Article 75. Immunity of speeches in
Congress

Deputies to the National People’s Congress may not be held legally liable
for their speeches or votes at its meetings.

Article 76. Duty to uphold
Constitution

Deputies to the National People’s Congress must play an exemplary role in
abiding by the Constitution and the law and keeping state secrets, in public
activities, production and other work, assist in enforcement of the
Constitution and the law.

Deputies to the National People’s Congress should maintain close contact
with the unites which elected them and with the people, heed and convey the
opinions and demands of the people and work hard to serve them.

Article 77. Recall of deputies

Deputies to the National People’s Congress are subject to the supervision of
the units which elected them. The electoral units have the power, through
procedures prescribed by law, to recall the deputies whom they elected.

Article 78. Organization

The organization and working procedures of the National People’s Congress
and its Standing Committee are prescribed by law.


§ 2. The President of the People’s Republic
of China

Article 79. Election,
qualifications

The President and the Vice President of the People’s Republic of China are
elected by the National People’s Congress.

Citizens of the People’s Republic of China who have the right to vote and to
stand for election and who have reached the age of 45 are eligible for election
as President or National People’s Congress ice President of the People’s
Republic of China.

The term of office of the President and Vice President of the People’s
Republic of China is the same as that of the National People’s Congress, and
they shall serve no more than two consecutive terms.

Article 80. Powers

The President of the People’s Republic of China, in pursuance of the
decisions of the National People’s Congress and its Standing Committee,
promulgates statutes, appoints or removes the Premier, Vice Premiers, State
Councilors, Ministers in charge of ministries or commissions, the Auditor-
General and the Secretary-General of the State Council, confers state medals and
titles of honor; issues orders of special pardons; proclaims entering of the
state of emergency; proclaims a state of war; and issues mobilization
orders.

Article 81. Duties

The President of the People’s Republic of China, on behalf of the People’s
Republic of China, engages in activities involving State affairs and receives
foreign diplomatic representatives and, in pursuance of the decisions of the
Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress, appoints or recalls
plenipotentiary representatives abroad, and ratifies or abrogates treaties and
important agreements concluded with foreign states.

Article 82. Vice-President

The Vice President of the People’s Republic of China assists the President
in his work.

The Vice President of the People’s Republic of China may exercise such
functions and powers of the President and the President may entrust to him.

Article 83. Transition of power

The President and the Vice President of the People’s Republic of China
exercise their functions and powers until the new President and Vice President
elected by the succeeding National People’s Congress assume office.

Article 84. Presidential
succession

In the event that the office of the President of the People’s Republic of
China falls vacant, the Vice President of the People’s Republic of China
succeeds to the office of President.

In the event the office of the Vice President of the People’s Republic of
China falls vacant, the National People’s Congress shall elect a new Vice
President to fill the vacancy.

In the event that the offices of both the President and the Vice President
of the People’s Republic of China fall vacant, the National People’s Congress
shall elect a new President and a new Vice President. Prior to such election,
the Chairman of the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress shall
temporarily act as the President of the People’s Republic of China.


§ 3. The State Council

Article 85. Executive branch

The State Council, that is, the Central People’s Government of the People’s
Republic of China, is the executive body of the highest organ of state power;
it is the highest organ of state administration.

Article 86. Composition

The State Council is composed of the following:

the Premier; the Vice Premiers; the State Councilors; the Ministers in
charge of ministries; the Ministers in charge of commissions; the Auditor
General; and the Secretary General.

The Premier assumes overall responsibility for the work of the State Council. The Ministers assume overall responsibility for the work of the ministries and commissions.

The organization of the State Council is prescribed by law.

Article 87. Term

The term of office of the State Council is the same as that of the National
People’s Congress.

Article 88. Duties of Premier

The Premier directs the work of the State Council. The Vice Premiers and
State Councilors assist the Premier in his work.

Executive meetings of the State Council are to be attended by the Premier,
the Vice Premiers, the State Councilors and the Secretary General of the State
Council.

Article 89. Enumerated powers

The State Council exercises the following functions and powers:

(1) to adopt administrative measures, enact administrative rules and
regulations and issue decisions and orders in accordance with the Constitution
and the law;

(2) to submit proposals to the National People’s Congress or its Standing
Committee;

(3) to formulate the tasks and responsibilities of the ministries and
commissions of the State Council, to exercise unified leadership over the work
of the ministries and commissions and direct all other administrative work of a
national character that does not fall within the jurisdiction of the ministries
and commissions;

(4) to exercise unified leadership over the work of local organs of state
administration at various levels throughout the country, and to formulate the
detailed division of functions and powers between the Central Government and
the organs of state administration of provinces, autonomous regions, and
municipalities directly under the Central Government;

(5) to draw up and implement the plan for national economic and social
development of the state budget;

(6) to direct and administer economic affairs and urban and rural
development;

(7) to direct and administer the affairs of education, science, culture, public
health, physical culture and family planning;

(8) to direct and administer civil affairs, public security, judicial
administration, supervision and other related matters;

(9) to conduct foreign affairs and conclude treaties and agreements with
foreign states;

(10) to direct and administer the building of national defense;

(11) to direct and administer affairs concerning the nationalities and to
safeguard the equal rights of minority nationalities and the right to autonomy
of the national autonomous areas;

(12) to protect the legitimate rights and interests of Chinese nationals
residing abroad and protect the lawful rights and interests of returned
overseas Chinese and of the family members of Chinese nationals residing
abroad;

(13) to alter or annul inappropriate orders, directives and regulations issued
by the ministries or commissions;

(14) to alter or annul inappropriate decisions and orders issued by local
organs of state administration at various levels;

(15) to approve the geographic division of provinces, autonomous regions and
municipalities directly under the Central Government, and to approve the
establishment and geographic division of autonomous prefectures, counties,
autonomous counties, and cities;

(16) in accordance with the provisions of law, to decide on entering the state
of emergency in parts of provinces, autonomous regions, and municipalities
directly under the Central Government;

(17) to examine and decide on the size of administrative organs and, in
accordance with the law, to appoint or remove administrative officials, train
them, appraise their performance and reward or punish them; and

(18) to exercise such other functions and powers as the National People’s
Congress or its Standing Committee may assign to it.

Article 90. Ministers

Ministers in charge of the ministries or commissions of the State Council
are responsible for the work of their respective departments and they convene
and preside over ministerial meetings for general and executive meetings of the
commissions to discuss and decide major issues in the work of their respective
departments.

The ministries and commissions issues orders, directives and regulations
within the jurisdiction of their respective departments in accordance with the
law and the administrative rules and regulations, decisions and orders issued
by the State Council.

Article 91. Auditors

The State Council establishes an auditing body to supervise through auditing
the revenue and expenditure of all departments under the State Council and of
the local governments at various levels, and the revenue and expenditure of all
financial and monetary organizations, enterprises and institutions of the
state.

Under the direction of the Premier of the State Council, the auditing body
independently exercises its power of supervision through auditing in accordance
with the law, subject to no interference by any other administrative organ of
any public organization or individual.

Article 92. State Council reports to
Congress

The State Council is responsible, and reports on its work, to the National
People’s Congress or, when the National People’s Congress is not in session, to
its Standing Committee.


§ 4. The Central Military
Commission

Article 93. Function,
composition

The Central Military Commission of the People’s Republic of China directs
the armed forces of the country.

The Central Military Commission is composed of the following:

the Chairman; the Vice Chairmen; and the members.

The Chairman assumes overall responsibility for the work of the Central
Military Commission.

The term of office of the Central Military Commission is the same as that of
the National People’s Congress.

Article 94. Chairman reports to
Congress

The Chairman of the Central Military Commission is responsible to the
National People’s Congress and its Standing Committee.


§ 5. The Local People’s Congresses and the
Local People’s Governments at Different Levels

Article 95. Distribution

People’s congresses and people’s governments are established in provinces,
municipalities directly under the Central Government, counties, cities,
municipal districts, townships, nationality townships, and towns.

The organization of local people’s congresses and local people’s governments
at various levels is prescribed by law.

Organs of self-government are established in autonomous regions, autonomous
prefectures and autonomous counties. The organization and working procedures of
organs of self-government are prescribed by law in accordance with the basic
principles laid down in Sections V and VI of Chapter Three of the
Constitution.

Article 96. Composition

Local people’s congresses at various levels are local organs of state
power.

Local people’s congresses at and above the county level establish standing
committees.

Article 97. Election of
deputies

Deputies to the people’s congresses of provinces, municipalities directly
under the Central Government and cities divided into districts are elected by
the people’s congresses at the next lower level; deputies to the people’s
congresses of counties, cities not divided into districts, municipal districts,
townships, nationality townships, and towns are elected directly by their
constituencies.

The number of deputies to local people’s congresses at various levels and
the manner of their election are prescribed by law.

Article 98. Term

The term of office of the local people’s congresses at various levels is five
years.

Article 99. Duties and powers

Local people’s congresses at various levels ensure the observance and
implementation of the Constitution and the law and the administrative rules and
regulations in their respective administrative areas. Within the limits of
their authority as prescribed by law, they adopt and issue regulations and
examine and decide on plans for local economic and cultural development and for
the development of public services.

Local people’s congresses at and above the county level shall examine and
approve the plans for economic and social development and the budgets of their
respective administrative areas and examine and approve the reports on their
implementation. They have the power to alter or annual inappropriate decisions
of their own standing committees.

The people’s congresses of nationality townships may, within the limits of
their authority as prescribed by law, take specific measures suited to the
characteristics of the nationalities concerned.

Article 100. Adoption of local
law

The people’s congresses of provinces and municipalities directly under the
Central Government and their standing committees may adopt local regulations,
which must not contravene the Constitution and the law and administrative rules
and regulations, and they shall report such local regulations to the Standing
Committee of the National People’s Congress for the record.

Article 101. Election and recall of
governors

Local people’s congresses and their respective levels elect and have the
power to recall governors and deputy governors, or mayors and deputy mayors, or
heads deputy heads of counties, districts, townships and towns.

Local people’s congresses at and above the county level elect, and have the
power to recall, presidents of people’s courts and chief pocurators of people’s
procuratorates at the corresponding level. The election or recall of chief
procurators of people’s procuratorates at the next higher level for submission
to the standing committees of the people’s congresses at the corresponding
level for approval.

Article 102. Deputies subject to electoral
supervision

Deputies to the people’s congresses of provinces, municipalities directly
under the Central Government and cities divided into districts are subject to
supervision by the units which elected them; deputies to the people’s
congresses of counties, cities not divided into districts, municipal districts,
townships, nationality townships, and towns are subject to supervision by their
constituencies.

The electoral units and constituencies which elect deputies to local
people’s congresses at various levels have the power to recall the deputies
according to procedures prescribed by law.

Article 103. Composition of standing
committees

The standing committee of the local people’s congress at and above the
county level is composed of a chairman, vice chairmen and members, and is
responsible and reports on its work to the people’s congress at the
corresponding level.

A local people’s congress at or above the county level elects, and has the
power to recall, members of its standing committee.

No one on the standing committee of a local people’s congress at or above
the county level shall hold office in state administrative, judicial and
procuratorial organs.

Article 104. Duties of standing
committees

The standing committee of a local people’s congress at and above the county
level discusses and decides on major issues in all fields of work in its
administrative area; supervises the work of the people’s government, people’s
court and people’s procuratorate at the corresponding level; annuls
inappropriate decisions and orders of the people’s government at the
corresponding level; annuls inappropriate resolutions of the people’s congress
at the next lower level, decides on the appointment or removal of functionaries
of state organs within the limits of its authority as prescribed by law; and,
when the people’s congress at the corresponding level is not in session,
recalls individual deputies to the people’s congress at the next higher level
and elects individual deputies to fill vacancies in that people’s congress.

Article 105. Local governments

Local people’s governments at various levels are the executive bodies of
local organs of state power as well as the local organs of state administration
at the corresponding levels.

Governors, mayors and heads of counties, districts, townships and towns
assume overall responsibility for local people’s governments at various
levels.

Article 106. Terms

The term of office of local people’s governments at various levels is the
same as that of the people’s congresses at the corresponding levels.

Article 107. Powers

Local people’s governments at and above the county level, within the limits
of their authority as prescribed by law, conduct administrative work concerning
the economy, education, science, culture, public health, physical culture,
urban and rural development, finance, civil affairs, public security,
nationalities affairs, judicial administration, supervision and family planning
in their respective administrative areas, issue decisions and orders; appoint
or remove administrative functionaries, train them, appraise their performance
and reward or punish them.

People’s governments of townships, nationality townships, and towns execute
the resolutions of the people’s congress at the corresponding level as well as
the decisions and orders of the state administrative organs at the next higher
level and conduct administrative work in their respective administrative
areas.

Article 108. Hierarchy of
government

Local people’s governments at and above the county level direct the work of
their subordinate departments and of people’s governments at lower levels, and
have the power to alter or annul inappropriate decisions of their subordinate
departments and of people’s governments at lower levels.

Article 109. Auditing

Auditing bodies are established by local people’s governments at and above
the county level. Local auditing bodies at various levels independently
exercise their power of supervision through auditing in accordance with the law
and are responsible to the people’s government at the corresponding level and
to the auditing body at the next higher level.

Article 110. Responsibility for
reporting

Local people’s governments at various levels are responsible and report on
their work to the state administrative organs at the next higher level. Local
people’s governments at various levels throughout the country are state
administrative organs under the unified leadership of the State Council and are
subordinate to it.

Article 111. Grass-roots
government

The residents’ committees and villagers’ committees established among urban
and rural residents on the basis of their place of residence are mass
organizations of self-management at the grass roots level. The chairman, vice
chairmen and members of each residents’ or villagers’ committee are elected by
the residents. The relationship between the residents’ and villagers’
committees and the grass roots organs of state power is prescribed by law.

The residents’ and villagers’ committees establish committees for people’s
mediation, public security, public health and other matters in order to manage
public affairs and social services in their areas, mediate civil disputes, help
maintain public order and convey residents’ opinions and demands and make
suggestions to the people’s government.


§ 6. The Organs of Self-Government of
National Autonomous Areas

Article 112. Composition

The organs of self-government of national autonomous areas are the people’s
congresses and people’s governments of autonomous regions, autonomous
prefectures and autonomous counties.

Article 113. Right of nationalities in
Congress

In the people’s congress of an autonomous region, prefecture or county, in
addition to the deputies of the nationality exercising regional autonomy in the
administrative area, the other nationalities inhabiting the area are also
entitled to appropriate representation.

Among the chairman and vice chairmen of the standing committee of the
people’s congress of an autonomous region, prefecture or county there shall be
one or more citizens of the nationality or nationalities exercising regional
autonomy in the area concerned.

Article 114. Administrative head to be of
local nationality

The chairman of an autonomous region, the prefect of an autonomous
prefecture or the head of an autonomous county shall be a citizen of the
nationality exercising regional autonomy in the area concerned.

Article 115. Powers and
functions

The organs of self-government of autonomous regions, prefectures and
counties exercise the functions and powers of local organs of state as
specified in Section V of Chapter Three of the Constitution. At the same time,
they exercise the power of autonomy within the limits of their authority as
prescribed by the Constitution, the Law of the People’s Republic of China on
Regional National Autonomy and other laws and implement the laws and policies
of the state in the light of the existing local situation.

Article 116. Concurrency of regional and
national law

The people’s congresses of the national autonomous areas have the power to
enact regulations on the exercise of autonomy and other separate regulations in
the light of the political, economic and cultural characteristics of the
nationality or nationalities in the areas concerned. The regulations on the
exercise of autonomy and other separate regulations of autonomous regions shall
be submitted to the Standing Committee of the National People’s Congress for
approval before they go into effect. Those of autonomous prefectures and
counties shall be submitted to the standing committees of the people’s
congresses of provinces of autonomous regions for approval before they go into
effect, and they shall be reported to the Standing Committee of the National
People’s Congress for the record.

Article 117. Independence of
finance

The organs of self-government of the national autonomous areas have the
power of autonomy in administering the finances of their areas. All revenues
accruing to the national autonomous areas under the financial system of the
state shall be managed and used by the organs of self-government of those areas
on their own.

Article 118. Independence of economic
planning

The organs of self-government of the national autonomous areas independently
arrange for and administer local economic development under the guidance of the
state plans.

In exploiting natural resources and building enterprises in the national
autonomous areas, the state shall give due consideration to the interests of
those areas.

Article 119. Independence of art, science,
and culture

The organs of self-government of the national autonomous areas independently
administer educational, scientific, cultural, public health and physical
culture affairs in their respective areas, protect and sift through the
cultural heritage of the nationalities and work for a vigorous development of
their cultures.

Article 120. Organization of local
police

The organs of self-government of the national autonomous areas may, in
accordance with the military system of the state and practical local needs and
with the approval of the State Council, organize local public security forces
for the maintenance of public order.

Article 121. Use of local
language

deleted

Article 122. Assistance from the
state

The state provides financial, material and technical assistance to the
minority nationalities to accelerate their economic and cultural
development.

The state helps the national autonomous areas train large numbers of cadres
at various levels and specialized personnel and skilled workers of various
profession and trades from among the nationality or nationalities in those
areas.


§ 7. The People’s Courts and the People’s
Procuratorates

Article 123. Judicial branch

The people’s courts in the People’s Republic of China are the judicial
organs of the state.

Article 124. Composition

The People’s Republic of China establishes the Supreme People’s Court and
the people’s courts at various local levels, military courts and other special
people’s courts.

The term of office of the President of the Supreme People’s Court is the
same as that of the National People’s Congress. The President shall serve no
more than two consecutive terms.

The organization of the people’s courts is prescribed by law.

Article 125. Trial to be public, right to
defense

Except in special circumstances as specified by law, all cases in the
people’s courts are heard in public. The accused has the right to defense.

Article 126. Judicial
independence

The people’s courts exercise judicial power independently, in accordance
with the provisions of the law, and are not subject to interference by any
administrative organ, public organization or individual.

Article 127. Supreme People’s
Court

The Supreme People’s Court is the highest judicial organ.

The Supreme People’s Court supervises the administration of justice by the
people’s courts at various local levels and by the special people’s courts.
People’s courts at higher levels supervise the administration of justice by
those at lower levels.

Article 128. Supreme Court reports to
Congress

The Supreme People’s Court is responsible to the National People’s Congress
and its Standing Committee. Local people’s courts at various levels are
responsible to the organs of the state power which created them.

Article 129. Procuratorates
defined

The people’s procuratorates of the People’s Republic of China are state
organs for legal supervision.

Article 130. Division of
procuratorates

The People’s Republic of China establishes the Supreme People’s
Procuratorate and the people’s procuratorates at various levels, military
procuratortates and other special people’s procuratorates.

The term of office of the Procurator General of the Supreme People’s
Procuratorate is the same as that of the National People’s Congress; the
Procurator General shall serve no more than two consecutive terms.

The organization of the people’s procuratorates is prescribed by law.

Article 131. Procuratorial
independence

The people’s procuratorates exercise procuratorial power independently, in
accordance with the provisions of the law, and are not subject to interference
by any administrative organ, public organization or individual.

Article 132. Supreme People’s
Procuratorate

The Supreme People’s Procuratorate is the highest procuratorial organ.

The Supreme People’s Procuratorate directs the work of the people’s
procuratorates at various local levels and of the special people’s
procuratorates at various local levels. People’s procuratorates at higher
levels direct the work of those at lower levels.

Article 133. Supreme Procuratorate reports
to Congress

The Supreme People’s Procuratorate is responsible to the National People’s
Congress and its Standing Committee. People’s procuratorates at various levels
are responsible to the organs of state power which created them and to the
people’s procuratorates at higher levels.

Article 134. Right to use national
language

Citizens of all nationalities have the right to use the spoken and written
languages of their own nationalities in court proceedings. The people’s courts
and people’s procuratorates should provide translation for any party to the
court proceedings who is not familiar with the spoken or written languages
commonly used in the locality.

In an area where people of a minority nationality live in a concentrated
community or where a number of nationalities live together, court hearings
should be conducted in the language or languages commonly used in the locality;
indictments, judgments, notices and other documents should be written,
according to actual needs, in the language or languages commonly used in the
locality.

Article 135. Coordination of
efforts

The people’s courts, the people’s procuratorates and the public security
organs shall, in handling criminal cases, divide their functions, each taking
responsibility for its own work, and they shall coordinate their efforts and
check each other to ensure the correct and effective enforcement of the
law.


CHAPTER IV. The National
Flag, the National Anthem, the National Emblem and the Capital

Article 136. Flag

The national flag of the People’s Republic of China is a red flag with five
stars.

The National Anthem of the People’s Republic of China is the March of the
Volunteers.

Article 137. Emblem

The national emblem of the People’s Republic of China consists of an image
of Tiananmen in its center illuminated by five stars and encircled by ears of
grain and a cogwheel.

Article 138. Capital

The capital of the People’s Republic of China is Beijing.