Chinese President Xi Jinping was filmed coughing his way through a speech, sparking a wave of speculation about coronavirus.
In a clip from state TV, recorded in the city of Shenzhen, near Hong Kong, the 67-year-old raises his hand to his face multiple times.
The camera appears to cut from showing the Chinese Communist Party leader when he audibly coughs, panning over to the seated audience members instead.
His hand is clearly seen moving to his face when the footage cuts back.
Chinese state media deleted the footage but it has since gone viral on social media, provoking a flurry of commentary about whether he may have caught coronavirus.
“Xi Jinping May have COVID-19 his coughing fits have been edited from Chinese media,” tweeted a viewer.
A second person mused: “Notice how the Chinese TV crew camera cuts away from Xi when he starts coughing?
“Also notice the reaction of the audience.”
Someone else wrote: “Xi Jinping, does not stop coughing!”
Noting that US President Donald Trump has just recovered from coronavirus, a fourth added: “You know it would be funny if Xi caught the virus, then it would go full circle.
“He was coughing up a storm.”
China is only reporting 12 new coronavirus cases a day and its economy is recovering.
In his speech, Xi Jinping said the government would boost the economy further and allow new industries to develop post-coronavirus lockdown.
He promised a “great rejuvenation” in China powered by its gigantic manufacturing industries.
This comes after China announced it would test the whole population living in the city of Qingdao for coronavirus after just 12 cases were reported.