Chinese Foreign Minister Qin Gang was dismissed from his position earlier this week, serving a mere 207 days in office. His predecessor, Wang Yi, was reinstated to the top post on Tuesday, and officials claim that they are providing information about the situation in a regular manner. However, the uncertainty surrounding Qin’s fate and whereabouts persists, as all traces of his activities as a foreign minister have been expunged from official records.
References to the 57-year-old Qin have been scrubbed from China’s foreign ministry website, and attempts to search for his name yield no results. Previous articles regarding his diplomatic engagements display a message stating that the page either “does not exist or has been deleted.” Notably, Qin’s profile can still be found on other Chinese government websites, including the State Council, the Ministry of Commerce, and state media outlets.
Despite some mentioning of health issues earlier in the week, China has not provided any further explanation for Qin’s dismissal. Speculative reports suggest that the former ambassador to the United States and close associate of President Xi Jinping may have fallen out of favor with the authorities. Other rumors circulate regarding an alleged affair with a prominent television anchor, which some believe may have contributed to his current predicament.