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Chinese President Xi named head of new security body in move that strengthens grip on power

Chinese President Xi Jinping has been named head of a new national security body in a move that further strengthens his hold on power.

Xi is already leader of the ruling Communist Party and head of dual state and party commissions commanding the armed forces.

China announced the creation of the new body at a party meeting in November, but has offered few details other than that it is intended to "perfect" ways of safeguarding national security.

Friday's terse statement from the official Xinhua News Agency announced Xi would head the panel, as has been expected, but offered no additional information.

It is generally seen as centralizing decision making on both internal security and military affairs, potentially alleviating a chronic problem among Chinese agencies of not sharing information.