China’s top university has sacked a law professor, who is a staunch critic of the ruling Chinese Communist Party leadership including the constitutional amendment facilitating indefinite tenure for President Xi Jinping by scrapping the two-term limit.
Xu Zhangrun, an outspoken Chinese law professor of the Tsinghua University, has been formally notified of his removal on Saturday, Hong Kong-based South China Morning Post reported on Sunday.
The Tsinghua University, whose famous alumni include President Xi, has been listed as China’s number one university by the Times Higher Education World University Rankings.
The notification, dated on Wednesday, was sent to Xu by courier, the report said quoting a friend who requested anonymity for fear of retribution.
The Tsinghua University, where 57-year-old Xu worked for 20 years, said it took the decision after a meeting on July 10.
Xu, a prominent legal scholar, is one of the very few academics to have publicly challenged the Communist Party of China (CPC) leadership in recent years in a number of essays published online in China and overseas.
“We have verified that Xu Zhangrun has published many essays since July 2018 and it is a serious violation of the ‘10 standards of professional conduct for teachers in tertiary institutes in the new era’,” the notification read. The guidelines, issued by the Ministry of Education in 2018, said teachers would be fired or punished if they said or did anything that undermines the authority of the CPC or violated the directions and policies of the party.