5/31/2008

[转载]Singapore PM: Failure of Olympic Games in China would have 'serious' effect on world

The Associated Press
Saturday, May 31, 2008

SINGAPORE: The world must ensure the success of the Beijing Olympics because any disruption of the games will drive China into its shell with "serious long-term consequences" for Asian and world economies, Singapore's leader has warned.

Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong said Friday that Asia's growth will contribute to a doubling of the world economy in the next 25 years, and "the most important player in Asia is China."

In a speech to inaugurate an annual Asia-Pacific security conference known as the Shangri-La Dialogue, Lee noted the Olympic Games in August will be China's "coming out party to celebrate its progress and opening up to the world."

"If carried off well, it will boost China's confidence and help China to continue liberalizing and opening up. But if handled badly, it will stir up deep and angry nationalist resentments in China and fuel fears and suspicions of China in other countries, with serious long-term consequences," he said.

Among those attending the three-day Shangri-La Dialogue are U.S. Secretary of Defense Robert Gates and the defense ministers and military officials of 25 other countries, including China.

Lee noted the disruption of the Olympic torch relay in Europe and the U.S. last month show how things can go wrong.

"The broader question is whether narrow interest groups will succeed in defining the international agenda on China, or whether both China and the West can rise above these vexing issues to pursue the strategic opportunities together," said Lee.

China's opening up was amply demonstrated after this month's devastating earthquake in Sichuan province, when the government responded to the disaster with unprecedented speed and candor.

Premier Wen Jiabao flew to the disaster area immediately to oversee rescue operations and foreign journalists were given unrestricted access, unlike in the past. International aid workers were also given free rein.

This was in complete contrast to the situation in Myanmar, which was struck by a powerful cyclone a week before the China quake. It refused to allow foreign aid personnel until recently, and continues to decline offers by many countries to deploy military equipment and personnel for relief operations.

Myanmar's "military rulers surely know that foreign aid will save lives and help to rebuild the devastated areas. But they also fear the political consequences of opening up the disaster zone to international aid teams," Lee said.

"This might show up their own incapability and undermine their credibility and legitimacy," Lee said, in unusually frank comments about a country that is its partner in the 10-country Association of Southeast Asian Nations.


http://www.iht.com/articles/ap/2008/05/31/asia/AS-GEN-Asia-Security-Summit.php

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