China warns Trump if its interests are harmed

Donald Trump praises China president Xi extending tenure for life … 'maybe we'll have to give that a shot someday'

Though the United States leader's comments struck a jocular tone, many on Twitter voiced concern over the prospect of an indefinite Trump presidency.

"Resolutely safeguard General Secretary Xi Jinping's core status and the authority of the party's central committee and its centralized and unified leadership", Li said in a speech to almost 3,000 delegates to the ceremonial legislature in the Great Hall of the People.

China has no desire to overturn the existing worldwide order and its increasingly powerful military does not constitute a threat to others, the spokesman for the country's ceremonial legislature said Sunday.

The text says the change "will be conducive to safeguarding the authority and the unified leadership of the CCP Central Committee with Comrade Xi Jinping as the core and to strengthening and perfecting the national leadership system". In 1951, an amendment to the US constitution was passed to formally restrict presidents to two terms.

Although Beijing does not want a trade war with the U.S., it "will never sit by and watch while its rights and interests are infringed upon", Zhang Yesui, spokesman for the first session of the 13th National People's Congress, said at a news conference in Beijing on Sunday.

In a speech to the legislature, the premier set this year's growth target at "around 6.5 percent".

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China's military spending, already the world's second-highest behind the United States, is due to rise 8 percent to 1.1 trillion yuan ($173 billion) as Beijing prepares to launch its second aircraft carrier and develop stealth fighters and advanced missiles, according to Li's report.

The possibility has sparked public outcry, prompting Chinese censors to furiously stamp out dissenting voices on social media.

There are no term limits for the post of party general secretary and the chairmanship of both the party and state Central Military Commissions. Scientific Outlook on Development is also proposed to be constitutionalised this time, state-run Xinhua news agency reported.

Hua Po, a Beijing-based political commentator, said Xi was handed "a mess" when he took office five years ago and needs more time to finish the job.

In a speech at the opening of a largely ceremonial political advisory conference, Yu said the advisory body has "meticulously" worked to enhance patriotism among young people in Hong Kong and Macau as well as those farther overseas with invitations to visit China and outbound delegations. "To do this, it is not enough for him to serve only two terms", Hua told AFP. A USA official said Friday no countries will be exempt, but added that possible exemptions to the measures would be considered on a case-by-case basis.

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