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Singapore PM Lee Hsien Loong says Ukraine war poses ‘awkward questions’ for China

Lee Hsien Loong was asked during an event organized by the Washington-based Council on Foreign Relations on Wednesday whether he thinks China has paid a political price in the region for maintaining ties with Russia.

March 31, 2022 / 12:26 PM IST
Lee Hsien Loong

Lee Hsien Loong

Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong said Russia’s invasion of Ukraine raises “awkward questions” for China because it violates Beijing’s closely-held principles of territorial integrity, sovereignty and non-interference.

Lee was asked during an event organized by the Washington-based Council on Foreign Relations on Wednesday whether he thinks China has paid a political price in the region for maintaining ties with Russia.

“I think it presents them with awkward questions because on Ukraine, it violates the principles which the Chinese hold very dearly – territorial integrity, and sovereignty and non-interference,” Lee said. “And if you can do that to Ukraine, and if the Donbas can be considered to be enclaves, and maybe republics,” he added before the moderator interrupted to ask what about Taiwan.

“Or other parts of non-Han China?” Lee then said. “So, that is a very difficult question.”