China panics as Putin charms first lady

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Chinese official are in a rush to block footage of Russian President Vladimir Putin acting chivalrously toward President Xi Jinping’s wife.

At a Monday night concert at the APEC conference, Putin offered Xi’s wife, Peng Liyuan, his coat on a chilly night. Putin–who is apparently considered a heartthrob among many Chinese women–made Xi look like a weak, inattentive spouse, according to the Associated Press.

Chinese citizens began to make a series of off-color, critical jokes about Xi after watching footage of the gesture on state broadcaster CCTV. Chinese officials panicked and removed any access to the video from the Web, as well as any references to it on social media.

“The public show of consideration by Putin may provide fodder for jokes, which the big boss probably does not like,” said Beijing-based commentator Zhang Lifan.

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