Singapore’s Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong has shared his first remarks on Russia’s invasion of Ukraine on Monday (Feb. 28).
In his statement, which was posted on his Facebook and Twitter pages, PM Lee said that the events in Ukraine are important to Singapore.
Singapore “strongly condemns” Russia’s invasion of Ukraine
He said that Singapore “strongly condemns Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, and affirms that the sovereignty, independence and territorial integrity of Ukraine must be respected”.
PM Lee also said that the world would be a “dangerous place” for small countries like Singapore if international relations are based on “might is right”.
This is why Singapore supports international law and the United Nations Charter which prohibits acts of aggression against a sovereign state, he explained.
PM Lee also mentioned Foreign Minister Vivian Balakrishnan’s speech in Parliament earlier today about the situation in Ukraine and its implications on Singapore, as well as then- Foreign Minister K Shanmugam’s speech eight years ago when Russia annexed the Crimean Peninsula from Ukraine.
Lessons for Singapore
PM Lee went on to explain several lessons Singapore can learn from the situation in Ukraine.
“When treaties and diplomacy fail, we cannot rely on others to protect us. We must never lose the capability to defend ourselves. National Service and a strong, operationally ready SAF is our best deterrent against aggressors.
As a small country, we strive to maintain good relations with all countries big and small. We do not choose sides, but chart our own course based on consistent principles and long-term national interests.”
PM Lee also emphasised that Singapore must “remain a united and cohesive nation”, and that domestic politics must “stop at our shores”.
He added: “Russia’s attack on Ukraine reminds us how precious this is, and how important it is for all of us who call Singapore home to work together to preserve this happy state of affairs.”
Here is PM Lee’s full statement:
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Top images via PM Lee’s Facebook & Osinttechnical on Twitter.
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