Sri Lanka. Outrage after China distributes dry rations to foreign service officers

The Nelum Pokuna Mahinda Rajapaksa Theatre, built with the help of Chinese investment, in Colombo. – From an airport without planes to a revolving restaurant without diners, Sri Lanka’s economic crisis has been exacerbated by Chinese-funded projects that are neglected monuments of government extravagance (AFP)

COLOMBO: Amid a shortage of essentials in Sri Lanka due to a severe economic crisis, food rations distributed by China have drawn outrage from the country’s Foreign Service Officers Association (FSOA).
China’s attempt to distribute rations such as dhal, rice and other items, to influence foreign officials in crisis-stricken Sri Lanka, has been met with strong opposition.
The rations were all distributed by the Chinese government, but the CCP brand was concealed in bags provided to villagers, the Colombo Gazette reported. The worst bribe was the distribution of dry rations to Foreign Ministry personnel, the report adds.
“Nowhere in the world would an embassy offer such a contribution to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, especially in a country like Sri Lanka where China has seriously engaged with politicians to move forward with their ambitious Belt and Road Initiative. (BRI) which faces immense challenges,” according to the Sri Lankan news portal.
The Chinese donation to the Sri Lankan Foreign Ministry was apparently authorized by Foreign Secretary Jayanath Colombage and the China-Sri Lanka Friendship Association, which received money from the Chinese Embassy to purchase food products.
Reacting to the developments, the delegation of the Association of Foreign Service Officers of Sri Lanka in a meeting with Foreign Minister Colombage expressed outrage.
“We are convinced that the acceptance of such donations, especially by members of the Sri Lankan Foreign Service, is not appropriate and will place the Foreign Service and the Foreign Office in an embarrassing position,” the statement said. Association in a message.
The Colombo Gazette report said it was not the first time the Chinese Embassy tried to take advantage of the host country.
China has previously been accused of paying the government to increase its chances of winning projects while keeping the details hidden, the report adds.

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