Quirky moments from China’s annual Congress | TribLIVE.com
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Quirky moments from China’s annual Congress

Associated Press
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AP
In this Tuesday, March 5, 2019, photo, a delegate in ethnic minority dress wearing a hat made of animal fur and antlers arrives for the opening session of China’s National People’s Congress (NPC) at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing. The annual meeting of China’s legislature is a highly scripted affair, but quirky moments and offbeat details lurk around the edges and behind the scenes.
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AP
Security officials stand guard at the doors of the Great Hall of the People before the opening session of China’s National People’s Congress (NPC) in Beijing, Tuesday, March 5, 2019. The annual meeting of Chinaճ legislature is a highly scripted affair, but quirky moments and offbeat details lurk around the edges and behind the scenes.
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In this Sunday, March 3, 2019, photo, a visitor takes a cellphone photo of the Great Hall of the People during the opening session of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC) in Beijing. The annual meeting of China’s legislature is a highly scripted affair, but quirky moments and offbeat details lurk around the edges and behind the scenes.
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AP
An ethnic minority delegate wearing a colorful headgear leaves the Great Hall of the People after attending the opening session of China’s National People’s Congress in Beijing, Tuesday, March 5, 2019. The annual meeting of Chinaճ legislature is a highly scripted affair, but quirky moments and offbeat details lurk around the edges and behind the scenes.
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In this Monday, March 4, 2019, photo, military delegates carry satchels with individual nametags as they arrive for a meeting on the eve of the opening session of China’s National People’s Congress (NPC) at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing. The annual meeting of China’s legislature is a highly scripted affair, but quirky moments and offbeat details lurk around the edges and behind the scenes.
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In this Tuesday, March 5, 2019, photo, decorations dangle from the hats of bus ushers in ethnic minority dress as they pose for a group photo during the opening session of China’s National People’s Congress (NPC) at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing. The annual meeting of China’s legislature is a highly scripted affair, but quirky moments and offbeat details lurk around the edges and behind the scenes.
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AP
In this Tuesday, March 5, 2019, photo, bus ushers leap in unison as they pose for a group photo during the opening session of China’s National People’s Congress (NPC) at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing. The annual meeting of China’s legislature is a highly scripted affair, but quirky moments and offbeat details lurk around the edges and behind the scenes.
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In this Monday, March 4, 2019, file photo, soldiers in usher uniforms prepare for the arrival of delegates for a meeting ahead of Tuesday’s opening session of China’s National People’s Congress at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing. The annual meeting of Chinaճ legislature is a highly scripted affair, but quirky moments and offbeat details lurk around the edges and behind the scenes.
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AP
In this Sunday, March 3, 2019, photo, a paramilitary policeman stands with red and green flags as he directs traffic outside of the Great Hall of the People before the opening session of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC) in Beijing. The annual meeting of China’s legislature is a highly scripted affair, but quirky moments and offbeat details lurk around the edges and behind the scenes.
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AP
In this Sunday, March 3, 2019 photo, journalists interview a delegate before the opening session of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC) at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing. The annual meeting of China’s legislature is a highly scripted affair, but quirky moments and offbeat details lurk around the edges and behind the scenes.
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AP
In this Tuesday, March 5, 2019, photo, a policewoman delegate wearing medals on her uniform talks with a fellow delegate before the opening session of China’s National People’s Congress (NPC) at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing. The annual meeting of China’s legislature is a highly scripted affair, but quirky moments and offbeat details lurk around the edges and behind the scenes.
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Tourists take photos of the daily flag-raising ceremony in Tiananmen Square on the eve of the opening session of China’s National People’s Congress (NPC) in Beijing, Tuesday, March 5, 2019. A year since removing any legal barrier to remaining China’s leader for life, Xi Jinping appears firmly in charge, despite a slowing economy, an ongoing trade war with the U.S. and rumbles of discontent over his concentration of power.

BEIJING (AP) — The annual meeting of China’s legislature is a highly scripted affair, but quirky moments and offbeat details lurk around the edges and behind the scenes.

Hundreds of military officers serving as delegates march to the event in formation, carrying identical navy satchels, their red name tags dangling from delicate lengths of thread. A representative of an ethnic minority group wears a hat made from animal fur and antlers, walking to his seat amid a sea of delegates in staid business suits. And then there’s the paramilitary policeman at a far corner of a vast, blocked-off Tiananmen Square, waving green and red flags as he directs traffic at a parking area.

Nearly 6,000 delegates to the National People’s Congress and its advisory body descend on the hulking Great Hall of the People, the seat of China’s legislature, for approximately two weeks every March in what is known as the “Two Meetings.” The session is largely symbolic within China’s authoritarian one-party communist political system, but remains a highlight of the political calendar, during which the leadership sets out its goals and direction for the coming year.

Beyond that rubber stamp function, it’s a swirl of flashing cameras, crimson-clothed attendants and stern security guards helping maintain a tradition dating back decades to the founding of the People’s Republic of China.

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