Residents in Beijing welcome an inquiry into alleged corruption against former domestic security chief Zhou Yongkang. Paul Chapman reports.
PLEASE NOTE: EDIT CONTAINS MATERIAL THAT WAS ORIGINALLY 4:3 China's former domestic security chief Zhou Yongkang is by far the biggest fish yet caught up in President Xi Jinping's crackdown on corruption. The 71-year-old was under investigation for what a statement called suspected 'serious disciplinary violations'. That's the usual euphemism for corruption although it could imply some additional wrongdoing as well. On the streets of Beijing news of an inquiry into Zhou's activities was welcomed. (SOUNDBITE)(Mandarin) SUN MING, BEIJING RESIDENT, SAYING: "Zhou Yongkang was a very high-ranking official. It's good that even high-ranking officials are now being punished for corruption because it sends a warning to lower-ranking officials" (SOUNDBITE)(Mandarin) ZHANG ZIFAN, BEIJING RESIDENT, SAYING: "It's great to see so many corrupt officials have been picked out. I'm glad to see the government has intensified its efforts to fight corruption. The government's delivered what it owed to us." Sources have previously suggested the President suspected Zhou of planning appointments that would help him retain influence after he came to power in 2012. Historian and political commentator Zhang Lifan says party politics could be the motive for the latest development. (SOUNDBITE)(Mandarin) HISTORIAN AND INDEPENDENT POLITICAL COMMENTATOR ZHANG LIFAN, SAYING: "Many people use the strategy of eliminating political opponents in the name of fighting corruption. In a system where corruption prevails among high-ranking government officials you just need to point and fire, and you'll certainly hit someone because wherever you point there's corruption." Sources say former leaders Hu Jintao and Jiang Zemin gave their backing for the Zhou inquiry, a sign such a move won't open a rift within the ruling party