Simple Memorial Service for Former President Li Xiannian
BEIJING (AP) _ Former Chinese President Li Xiannian was cremated Saturday after a simple memorial service attended by China’s top leaders, the official media reported.
Li, president from 1982 to 1988, died last Sunday at the age of 83.
No state funeral was held, in keeping with a Communist Party directive last year banning funerals, tombstones and mausoleums for senior leaders. Instead, a simple service was held at the hospital where he died.
Party Secretary-General Jiang Zemin, Premier Li Peng, President Yang Shangkun and other members of the party’s powerful Politburo Standing Committee paid their last respects. The nationally televised evening news showed them bowing three times as a group before Li’s body.
Li was one of eight veteran Communist revolutionaries who, directly and through proteges, played key roles in setting government policy. Li was the first of them to die. The others include senior leader Deng Xiaoping, 87.