Using rights issues to pressure developing nations : China condemns West

By Sulochana Ramiah Mohan | Published: 2:00 AM Feb 26 2021

By Sulochana Ramiah Mohan

Chinese State Councillor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi had told Foreign Minister Dinesh Gunawardena that China firmly opposes some of the Western countries that are pressuring developing countries on the pretext of human rights, the Chinese Embassy in Colombo said yesterday (25).

The Embassy said Yi, in a telephone conversation on 24 February with Minister Gunawardena, had said China will unswervingly support Sri Lanka...

... to jointly safeguard the legitimate rights and interests of developing countries, the basic norms governing international relations, and the purposes and principles of the UN Charter, including non-interference in internal affairs of other countries.

The Embassy said Minister Gunawardena had told Yi that China has also led other countries on the way towards common development, and made a vital contribution to human civilisation. “Sri Lanka appreciates China's fair stance on human rights issues and is willing to join hands with China to safeguard fairness and justice in regional and international affairs. Those allegations about Xinjiang and Hong Kong are just baseless. We steadily support China on the Xinjiang, Hong Kong-related issues and the One-China Policy.”

Stating that this year marks the 100th anniversary of the founding of the Communist Party of China (CPC), Yi said China has won the victory of ending extreme poverty and achieved great results in building a moderately prosperous society in all respects, and will embark on a new journey toward fully building a modern socialist country.

China's development means a growing force for peace and the growth of developing countries, which will provide more development opportunities for developing countries, including Sri Lanka, he added.

Yi called on the two sides to make solid progress in cooperation within the framework of the Belt and Road Initiative, turning the Colombo Port City and the Hambantota Port into two major engines to boost Sri Lanka's economic development, pushing for Sri Lanka's industrialisation, and enhancing the country's capacity for independent development.

The Chinese Embassy in Colombo said Minister Gunawardena, had responded to Yi that Sri Lanka regards China as its closest friend and sincerely thanks China for its long-term, selfless help for Sri Lanka's economic development, improvement of people's livelihood, and coping with internal and external challenges. 

Gunawardena highlighted that the Colombo Port City and Hambantota Port are key projects for Sri Lanka's future development, and we welcome more Chinese investment, businessmen, and tourists. 

In recent years, Gunawardena said, some Western countries, including the United States, once again exploited the human rights issues, and baselessly accused developing countries including Sri Lanka at the United Nations (UN) Human Rights Council sessions. He expressed his hope that China will continue to uphold justice and stand with developing countries, the Embassy stated. 

Yi said Gunawardena warmly congratulated China on the 100th anniversary of the CPC's founding, saying that China has, under the leadership of the CPC, completely lifted itself out of poverty, made great development achievements, and significantly improved the livelihood of its people.

By Sulochana Ramiah Mohan | Published: 2:00 AM Feb 26 2021

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