Beijing Coup d'Etat

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Feng Yuxiang convened a military meeting at Luanping.

On October 23, 1924, General Feng Yuxiang betrayed the Zhili clique of warlords and seized control of Beijing.

Feng rose to prominence in the Zhili clique of warlords, but was shunted aside in the army, causing Feng to become increasingly dissatisfied with Cao Kun and Wu Peifu. Thus, with influence from Dr. Sun Yat-sen's delegate Xu Qian, he carefully considered the practical steps and timing required to switch sides.

In the autumn of 1924, the Zhili clique headed by Wu Peifu went to war with Fengtian clique headed by Zhang Zuolin in the Second Zhili-Fengtian War. Seizing the opportunity to his advantage, Feng immediately swung his troops back to Beijing. In the morning hours of October 23, with collaboration from the Beijing Deputy Garrison Commander in Chief Sun Yue, Feng Yuxiang's troops seized control of key government buildings, public utilities and the roads leading into and out of Beijing. Cao Kun, the head of the Beijing government, was placed under house arrest and stripped of his presidency. Feng Yuxiang, Hu Jingyi and Sun Yue openly proclaimed that they stood with those who favored making peace and forced Cao Kun to call a truce and dismiss the post occupied by Wu Peifu.

After the coup, Feng initiated several reforms, including the expulsion of Puyi from the Forbidden City and disarmament of the Zhili clique of warlords. After that, Feng convened political and military meetings with the purpose of creating a provisional government with Duan Qirui as its head. The meeting also invited Mr. Sun Yat-sen, and he issued his Statement on My Departure for the North, which advocated the movement against the imperialists and the warlords and demanded an end to all unequal treaties. In addition, Sun's Statement professed the acceptance of the idea proposed by the Communist Party to convene a national congress.