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Wednesday, July 14, 2004

China renews protest against visit to Taiwan by Singapore's Lee

China renews protest against visit to Taiwan by Singapore's Lee: "China on Tuesday renewed its protest against a visit to Taiwan by Singapore's Deputy Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong, rejecting Singapore's claim that it is a private visit and warning that it would harm bilateral relations.
'Mr. Lee Hsien Loong has held senior offices in the Singapore government for many years,' Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Zhang Qiyue told a regular press briefing. That fact cannot be changed 'by a simple remark that it is an unofficial, private visit,' she said.
Lee's visit 'undermines the political foundation of China-Singapore relations, and will inevitably cause severe consequences for bilateral relations and cooperation,' the spokeswoman said.
Asked whether Zhou Xiaochuan, governor of the People's Bank of China, has canceled a scheduled visit to Singapore to protest Lee's trip to Taiwan, Zhang said, 'Under the current circumstances, China-Singapore exchanges will of course be severely affected.'
Lee arrived in Taiwan on Saturday and met with Taiwanese President Chen Shui-bian on Monday.
China considers Taiwan, which separated from the mainland in 1949, part of its territory awaiting reunification"

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