China paper slams S’pore ‘hypocrisy’

The Sun (Malaysia) - - NEWS WITHOUT BORDERS -

BEI­JING: The Global Times, China’s na­tion­al­ist state-owned tabloid, has warned that Sin­ga­pore’s “hypocrisy” over its mil­i­tary re­la­tion­ship with Tai­wan could harm bi­lat­eral re­la­tions with China, ac­cord­ing to an op-ed pub­lished yes­ter­day.

Nine Sin­ga­porean ar­moured troop car­ri­ers were im­pounded in Hong Kong last week en route back from Tai­wan, spark­ing a re­buke from China’s for­eign min­istry about main­tain­ing mil­i­tary ties with Taipei.

“It is no longer rea­son­able for Sin­ga­pore to con­tinue ... any kind of mil­i­tary ex­change with Tai­wan,” said the ar­ti­cle, writ­ten by a com­men­ta­tor iden­ti­fied only as Ai Jun, which is a homonym for “love the army”.

Sin­ga­pore and Tai­wan have a long­stand­ing mil­i­tary re­la­tion­ship that be­gan in the 1970s and in­volves Tai­wan be­ing used as grounds for Sin­ga­porean in­fantry train­ing.

Bei­jing has grudg­ingly tol­er­ated this agree­ment since the China and Sin­ga­pore reestab­lished diplo­matic re­la­tions in the 1990s.

The in­ci­dent with the ar­moured troop car­ri­ers “adds to the sus­pi­cion” that Sin­ga­pore is work­ing against the “one China” prin­ci­ple, said the paper.

Bei­jing views Tai­wan as a break­away prov­ince that should be brought back un­der its rule, by force if nec­es­sary.

The ar­ti­cle went on to list Sin­ga­pore’s mil­i­tary re­la­tions with the US and its stance on the South China Sea as fur­ther demon­strat­ing this “hypocrisy”.

Sin­ga­pore is aid­ing the US in a China con­tain­ment strat­egy by al­low­ing Amer­i­can forces to be sta­tioned at the Changi Naval Base, it added. – Reuters

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