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China, officially the People's Republic of China (PRC), is a country in East Asia. With a population exceeding 1.4 billion, it is the world's second-most populous country after India and contains 17.4% of the world population. China spans the equivalent of five time zones and borders fourteen countries by land. With an area of nearly 9.6 million square kilometers (3,700,000 sq mi), it is the third-largest country by total land area. The country is divided into 33 province-level divisions: 22 provinces, five autonomous regions, four municipalities, and two semi-autonomous special administrative regions. Beijing is the country's capital, while Shanghai is its most populous city by urban area and largest financial center.

A cradle of civilization, China has been inhabited since the Paleolithic era, with the earliest dynasties emerging in the Yellow River basin before the late second millennium BCE. The eighth to third centuries BCE saw a breakdown in the authority of the Zhou dynasty, accompanied by the emergence of administrative and military techniques, literature, philosophy, and historiography. In 221 BCE, China was unified under an emperor for the first time. Appointed non-hereditary officials began ruling counties instead of the aristocracy, ushering in more than two millennia of imperial dynasties including the Qin, Han, Tang, Yuan, Ming, and Qing. With the invention of gunpowder and paper, the establishment of the Silk Road, and the building of the Great Wall, Chinese culture—including languages, traditions, architecture, philosophy and technology—flourished and has heavily influenced East Asia and beyond. However, China began to cede parts of the country in the late 19th century to various European powers by a series of unequal treaties.

China is a unitary one-party socialist republic led by the CCP. One of the five permanent members of the UN Security Council, it joined the UN when recognition of China was changed from the Republic of China to the People's Republic of China in 1971. It is a founding member of several multilateral and regional organizations such as the AIIB, the Silk Road Fund, the New Development Bank, and the RCEP. It is a member of the BRICS, the G20, APEC, the SCO, and the East Asia Summit. Making up around one-fifth of the world economy, the Chinese economy is the world's largest economy by GDP at purchasing power parity, the second-largest economy by nominal GDP, and the second-wealthiest country, albeit ranking poorly in measures of democracy, human rights and religious freedoms. The country has been one of the fastest-growing major economies and is the world's largest manufacturer and exporter, as well as the second-largest importer. China is a nuclear-weapon state with the world's largest standing army by military personnel and the second-largest defense budget. It is a great power and a regional power. China is known for its cuisine, culture and has 57 UNESCO World Heritage Sites. (Full article...)

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Jiangsu cuisine (simplified Chinese: 江苏菜; traditional Chinese: 江蘇菜; pinyin: Jiāngsū cài), also known as Su cuisine (simplified Chinese: 苏菜; traditional Chinese: 蘇菜; pinyin: Sū cài), is one of the Eight Culinary Traditions of Chinese cuisine. It is derived from the native cooking styles of Jiangsu Province. In general, Jiangsu cuisine's texture is characterized as soft, but not to the point of mushy or falling apart. In addition, Jiangsu cuisine also focuses on heating temperature. For example, the meat tastes quite soft but would not separate from the bone when picked up. As the style of Jiangsu cuisine is typically practised near the sea, fish is a very common ingredient in cooking. Other characteristics include the strict selection of ingredients according to the seasons, with emphasis on the matching color and shape of each dish and using soup to improve flavor. The municipality of Shanghai was formerly a part of Jiangsu thus the great deal of similarity between the two, and Shanghai cuisine is sometimes classified as a part of Jiangsu cuisine. (Full article...)

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Hong Kong skyline
Hong Kong skyline
Credit: David Iliff

The night skyline of Hong Kong, Victoria Harbour and Kowloon, as seen from Victoria Peak, the tallest mountain on Hong Kong Island. Hong Kong is located on China's south coast on the Pearl River Delta, and borders Guangdong province in the north and faces the South China Sea in the east, west and south. It has a population of 7.4 million people, and is one of the most densely populated areas in the world.

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In the news

21 June 2024 – 2024 Guangdong floods
The death toll from the floods and landslides in Meizhou, Guangdong, China, increases to 47 people. (Al Jazeera)
21 June 2024 – Cross-Strait relations
China officially defines Taiwanese separatist behavior as a criminal act. (Financial Times)
20 June 2024 – ChinaAngVirus disinformation campaign
Congress of the Philippines lawmakers pursue an investigation into a U.S. military social media disinformation operation to discredit Chinese COVID-19 vaccines to Filipinos to determine the damages caused, international law infringements, and possible legal action. (Reuters)
20 June 2024 –
The Japanese Ministry of Foreign Affairs announces sanctions on firms based in China, India, Kazakhstan, and Uzbekistan, for their alleged support to Russia in the Russo–Ukrainian war. (Al Jazeera)
19 June 2024 –
At least four people are killed and more than a dozen others are missing after record rains impact parts of southern China. (Al Jazeera)
Human Rights Watch reports that China has changed the names of hundreds of villages inhabited by Uyghurs in order to reflect the ruling Communist Party's ideology. (DW)

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China's Politics

Emblem of the Communist Party of China
Emblem of the Communist Party of China
Xi Jinping
Xi Jinping

The General Secretary of the Chinese Communist Party, officially General Secretary of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China, is head of the Chinese Communist Party and the highest-ranking official within China, a standing member of the Politburo and head of the Secretariat. The officeholder is usually considered the paramount leader of China.

According to the Constitution, the General Secretary serves as an ex officio member of the Politburo Standing Committee, China's de facto top decision-making body. Since the early 1990s, the holder of the post has been, except for transitional periods, the Chairman of the Central Military Commission, making the holder the Commander-in-chief of the People's Liberation Army.

The current General Secretary is Xi Jinping (pictured), who took the office at the 18th National Congress on 15 November 2012.

National Emblem of the Republic of China
National Emblem of the Republic of China
Tsai Ing-wen
Tsai Ing-wen

The President of the Republic of China is the head of state of the Republic of China (ROC).

The Constitution names the president as head of state and commander-in-chief of the Republic of China Armed Forces (formerly known as the National Revolutionary Army). The president is responsible for conducting foreign relations, such as concluding treaties, declaring war, and making peace. The president must promulgate all laws and has no right to veto. Other powers of the president include granting amnesty, pardon or clemency, declaring martial law, and conferring honors and decorations.

The current President is Tsai Ing-wen (pictured), since May 20, 2016. The first woman to be elected to the office, Tsai is the seventh president of the Republic of China under the 1947 Constitution and the second president from the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP).

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Wikipedias in languages found in China

粵語 / 广东话 (Cantonese)           古文 / 文言文 (Classical Chinese)           赣语 (Gan)           Hak-kâ-fa (Hakka)           قازاق تىلى (Kazakh)           中文 / 普通话 (Mandarin) (Now unable to access in
China Mainland because of the GFW)          
闽东语 (Min Dong)           闽南语 (Min-nan)           བོད་ཡིག (Tibetan)           ئۇيغۇرچە (Uyghur)           吴语 (Wu)           Sawcuengh (Zhuang)

wiki incubator Xiang (湘语) wiki incubator Pu-Xian Min (莆仙话) wiki incubator Min Bei (闽北语)
wiki incubator lahu (拉祜族,拉祜语) wiki incubator Nuosu (彝族,彝语) wiki incubator hmong (苗族,苗语)
wiki incubator Bouyei (布依族,布依语) wiki incubator manchu (满族,满语) wiki incubator Xong (苗族,湘西苗语)
wiki incubator Daw (苗族,白苗苗语) wiki incubator xibo (锡伯族,锡伯语) wiki incubator salar (撒拉族,撒拉语)
wiki incubator цзинпо (景颇族,景颇语) wiki incubator Tai Nüa (傣族,德宏傣语) wiki incubator Amis (阿美族,阿美語)
wiki incubator Western Yugur (裕固族,西部裕固语) wiki incubator northern tujia (土家族,北部土家语)

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  1. ^ Redmond (2021); Adler (2022), chs. 1, 6, 7.
  2. ^ Norman (1988), pp. 64–65; Demattè (2022).