Tue, 29 Nov 2022 07:10 AM IST
BRITAIN Prime Minister Rishi Sunak on Monday said the "golden era" between UK and China is "now over" and that it is time to evolve the approach towards China as the nation is posing a systemic challenge to UK's values and interests with its authoritarian rule.
This comes during his first major address on Foreign Policy. At the Lord Mayor's Banquet in London's Guildhall, Sunak also criticised the human rights abuses taking place in China while putting forward his stance on foreign policy.
"Let's be clear, the so-called 'golden era' is over, along with the naive idea that trade would lead to social and political reform. We recognise China poses a systemic challenge to our values and interests, a challenge that grows more acute as it moves towards even greater authoritarianism," the UK PM, as quoted by ANI said.
Attacking the Chinese government, UK Prime Minister expressed his concern over the ongoing outrage in China against the COVID lockdown, and said instead of paying attention to the concern of its citizens, the government has chosen to crack down further.
On Sunday afternoon, hundreds of people gathered in downtown Shanghai to participate protest against China's zero-Covid policy. Demonstrators holding blank pieces of paper and white flowers stood silently at several intersections, the person said under condition of anonymity, before police officers eventually moved to clear the blocked roads.
Earlier this month, during the G20 summit in Bali, Indonesia, Sunak was scheduled to meet with Chinese President Xi Jinping. However, the meeting was cancelled as NATO members gathered for an emergency meeting following a missile strike in a Polish village close to the Ukrainian border.
The Prime Minister outlined the steps the UK government has taken to prevent China from limiting its influence in the UK, including new authority granted under the National Security and Investment Act.
Meanwhile, Sunak promised to continue assisting Ukraine's valiant warriors and declared that Britain will continue to offer humanitarian aid to make sure Ukrainian people have access to food and medicine amid the ongoing war.