Top Chinese general commits suicide amid graft probe

BEIJING – A high-ranking Chinese military officer committed suicide after authorities opened an investigation against him over his links to two corruption-tainted former senior military officers, state media said Tuesday.

General Zhang Yang, a member of the Central Military Commission, hanged himself in his Beijing home on Nov 23, Xinhua news agency said, citing a commission statement.

Zhang, 66, was the latest official to be ensnared in President Xi Jinping’s sweeping anti-corruption campaign, which has brought down 1.5 million Communist Party officials of various levels as well as top military brass since 2012.

Zhang, who was the director of the commission’s general political department, was investigated in connection to Guo Boxiong and Xu Caihou, top military officials who were expelled from the ruling Communist Party.

Guo, a vice-chairman of the commission, became the most senior People’s Liberation Army (PLA) official to be convicted of corruption in half of century when he was sentenced to life in prison in 2016.

Xu, also a vice-chairman of the commission, died of cancer in 2015 while undergoing a probe for graft.