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Unpublished Paper
Origin of Communist Policing in The People's Republic of China
  • Kam C. Wong

This is an investigation into the origin of Communist policing in the People’s Republic of China (PRC). Existing literature on the PRC police (baowei, gongan, jingcha) are not in agreement as to the origin of Communist policing. Most sources, particularly western ones, point to the formation of the Ministry of Public Security in November of 1949 as the origination of Communist police. Others, particularly the PRC police historians, have traced the starting date to November of 1931 when the Chinese Soviet government in Shan-Gan-Ning border area established the Political Security Department (zhengzhi baoweiju). Still, a minority have suggested that Communist policing originated on August 7, 1927 with the establishment of the Central Special Service Branch (zhongyang de ke).

This paper, using original archive materials, adopting a functional approach, and relying upon a relative government analytical framework, traces the origins of Communist policing to the Canton-Hong Kong Strike jiuchadui (July 1925 to October 1926). During the Canton-Hong Kong Strike the KMT National government in Guangzhou delegated policing powers to the CCP led Strike Committee jiuchadui to perform vital police functions, including enforcing strike laws, maintaining strike order, and securing strike discipline.

In summary, this paper argues that the CCP jiuchadui acted as a quasi-governmental police force during the Canton-Hong Kong strike period and should be considered as one of the very first Communist policing experiences.

  • Communist policing,
  • PRC policing,
  • Policing in China,
  • Origin of police in China,
  • Police history
Publication Date
Citation Information
Kam C. Wong. "Origin of Communist Policing in The People's Republic of China" (2001)
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