Participants stand as The Internationale anthem is played at an event to mark the bicentennial of Karl Marx's birth at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing Friday, May 4, 2018. (AP Photo/Ng Han Guan)
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Chinese president Xi Jinping pledged Friday his country will keep following Marxism, as the world's largest communist party prepares to mark the 200th birthday of Karl Marx.Marxism still holds sway in China, despite decades of market-driven growth that has made it the second largest economy in the world.Banners promoting "socialism with Chinese characteristics" -- a Chinese interpretation of Marxist-Leninist theories with a dash of nationalism -- have also sprouted in cities and villages in recent years.Chinese scholars credit China's ability to lift more than 500 million people out of poverty to this philosophy instead of the opening up of markets.Marx celebrations in China also dovetail with Xi's attempts to expand the party's influence as he pushes through sweeping changes in the political system and the military, and consolidate his own power after the removal of presidential term limits.
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