INTRODUCTION: As Chairman Hua Guofeng failed to appear at a New Year's Day party in Peking, speculation mounted that the Chinese leader would soon resign.
GV PAN Interior of People's Great Hall
SV Deng Xiaoping shaking hands with guests
SV Madame Deng Yingchou, shaking hands with officials.
SV Guests being seated
SV pull out to GV Hu Yaobang speaking. Delegates listening, including Deng and Madame Deng (3 shots)
GV Madame Deng and Deng Ziaoping standing and applauding
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Background: INTRODUCTION: As Chairman Hua Guofeng failed to appear at a New Year's Day party in Peking, speculation mounted that the Chinese leader would soon resign. Hua, a protegee of Mao Tse-Tung, has not been seen in public since November the 27th, and now appears likely to step down as Chairman of the Communist Party.
SYNOPSIS: The New Year's Day reception was held in the People's Great Hall in Peking.
Party Vice-Chairman Deng Xiaoping appeared alert in spite of his 76 years. Although the party was hosted by Mr. Hu Yaobang, Secretary-General of the Communist Party, Chinese television coverage concentrated on Vice-Chairman Deng, who is seen China's current political strongman.
Madame Deng Yingchou, widow of Chou Enlai, was also on hand to welcome guests to the tea party.
Hu Yaobang addressed the gathering, first with a New Year's greeting, then with a summary of the Party's plan for the future.Mr. Hu is regarded as Chairman Hua's most likely successor. He told guests that at a recent Central Committee conference the issue of party leadership was discussed along with the economic situation in China. Chairman Hua is expected to step down at plenary session of the Central Committee later this month of early February, after the Lunar New Year Spring Festival.