Chinese ambassador questions sovereignty of ex-Soviet states, provoking anger


Latvian International Minister Edgars Rinkevics demanded a retraction.

“Remarks by the Chinese language ambassador in France regarding worldwide regulation and sovereignty of countries are fully unacceptable,” he stated. “We anticipate [an] rationalization from the Chinese language facet and full retraction of this assertion.”

Gabrielius Landsbergis, overseas minister of Lithuania, whose nation has taken a powerful stance towards China on Taiwan, stated his nation’s scepticism had been vindicated.

“If anybody remains to be questioning why the Baltic states don’t belief China to ‘dealer peace in Ukraine’, right here’s a Chinese language ambassador arguing that Crimea is Russian and our international locations’ borders haven’t any authorized foundation,” he stated.

Lithuania has been punished by Beijing with related financial coercion measures as meted out to Australia.


Estonia International Minister Margus Tsahkna stated the Chinese language ambassador had falsified historical past.

“The feedback by the Chinese language consultant on unbiased and sovereign states are false and a misinterpretation of historical past,” he stated.

“Baltic states below worldwide regulation have been sovereign since 1918 however have been occupied for 50 years.”

The Soviet Union formally recognised the independence of the Baltic states, comprising Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia, in 1991. In the identical 12 months, they have been formally admitted to the United Nations and in 2004 have been admitted to the European Union and NATO.

The French International Ministry stated it was “dismayed” by the Chinese language ambassador’s feedback.

“Regarding Ukraine particularly, it was internationally recognised throughout the borders together with Crimea in 1991 by the entire worldwide neighborhood, together with China, on the fall of the USSR as a brand new member state of the United Nations.

“The annexation of Crimea by Russia in 2014 is illegitimate below worldwide regulation.

“The constitution of the United Nations, based mostly on the precept of sovereignty and territorial integrity, prohibits the acquisition of territories by drive.”

The EU’s International Affairs consultant Josep Borrell Fontelles urged China to make clear if the ambassador’s remarks represented Beijing’s official coverage.

“Unacceptable remarks of the Chinese language ambassador to France questioning the sovereignty of the international locations, which turned unbiased with the top of the Soviet Union in 1991,” he wrote on Twitter.

“The EU can solely suppose these declarations don’t symbolize China’s official coverage.”

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