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China’s Antigraft Watchdog Probes Party Officials in Alibaba, Ant’s Backyard

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HONG KONG—China’s anticorruption watchdog is investigating top government officials in the eastern Chinese city of Hangzhou, where Alibaba Group Holding Ltd and Ant Group Co. are based, raising questions about close ties between local top-level Communist Party officials and the private sector.

On Monday, China’s Central Commission for Discipline Inspection republished a report by its Hangzhou branch describing problems related to cozy government-business relationships and saying it had ordered the city’s Communist Party members to resolve conflicts of interests involving themselves or family members within three months. Close to 25,000 party cadres had undergone self-examination, the statement added.

The announcement came two days after the disciplinary commission’s national-level body announced a probe into Zhou Jiangyong, Hangzhou’s top Communist Party official, citing suspected serious violations of discipline and law. While the antigraft agency didn’t provide further details, the language used implied a corruption case.

The CCDI didn’t immediately reply to an email request for comment. Mr. Zhou couldn’t be reached for comment.

Over the weekend, the probe into Mr. Zhou, 53 years old, quickly became one of the top-trending topics on China’s Twitter -like Weibo platform, attracting more than 820 million views from users.

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