Sri Lanka: Port leased by China for 99 years, the world can no longer afford controversy
In 2017, China invested in Hambantota Port in Sri Lanka to officially hold the 99-year operation right, Toutiao reported.The port is expected to become an important channel for maritime trade in the future because of its superior geographical position.Western countries are salivating at this achievement, but the Western media are behind it, making negative remarks against China and trying to derail the project.Sri Lanka’s Hambantota Port, known as the “Crossroads of the East” due to its advantageous geographical location, was officially put into operation in 2012 with the help of Chinese enterprises. In 2017, China invested $1.12 billion to acquire 70% equity and 99-year lease of the port.The international community is waiting for Hambantota port to maximize its value and attraction, which is also an important part of China’s “One Belt, One Road” project and plays an important role in managing its layout in South Asia.From the perspective of geographical location, it has important international strategic value and has become the key project of China’s “century Maritime Silk Road”.Sri Lanka had an open international tender, but After China took pains to win the project, it ran into controversy from western countries.The purpose of western countries is to derail the project, and the United States has also increased its efforts to launch aid operations for Sri Lanka, but the purpose of the United States is clear, to curb China’s trade development will not stop.Therefore, in recent years, the “China threat theory” has been widely publicized on the international stage, and even the absurd claim that Hambantota Port will become a “military activity base”.It has been mentioned in the DEFENSE advisory report of the United States that China’s overseas trade ports will be upgraded to naval bases.China could use the port to dominate international shipping lanes, threatening the social standing of the US Navy.China has repeatedly stated that its real purpose in leasing hambantota port is not military but commercial.Sri Lanka has also echoed China’s argument on several occasions. In an attempt to escape the controversy, Sri Lanka once moved its naval command to Hambantota port to demonstrate the importance of the port and the navy’s control over it.In fact, this project is not easy.Hambantota port is the hometown of former Sri Lankan president Hambantota, and the 99-year lease was granted to China to pay off the debt incurred by the former President to revitalize hambantota.However, in the end, the former president failed in the election, and the later president was too cautious in his diplomatic attitude towards China, and even considered taking back China’s lease rights. Western countries continued to play up the “China threat theory”.It was not until the president clarified that the project could proceed.But western countries have been insisting that Sri Lanka’s debt crisis has made Hambantota a “victim”, and Sri Lanka’s president has done little to address the issue.China’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs has repeatedly refuted this and urged foreign media to stop making up lies.The real purpose of the United States is that the United States is also very selfish, repeatedly attacking China is to seek military bases in the port.It is reported that the Sri Lankan government will allow U.S. troops, ships and aircraft to operate freely in Sri Lankan territory.In fact, the United States has leased more than 300 military bases around the world, and is still seeking military bases in Central Asia after its withdrawal from Afghanistan.There is no doubt that the United States is the most threatening country in the international community. Its behavior is “thief crying stop thief”.But would western countries be outraged if China also used the port to build a military base?Therefore, in recent years, Western countries have repeatedly played up the “China threat theory”, hindering the development of China’s trade and interfering with China’s social influence.