In his latest interview with a reporter from Times magazine, Singapore’s Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong hit out at US President Obama for playing him out on the Trans-Pacific Pact (TPP) agreement.
The Singapore Prime Minister mocked the US election for “saying crazy things” and slammed presidential candidate, Hillary Clinton, for opposing the TPP.
“In every American election, crazy things are said… But this time it has been so nasty and harsh that I think Hillary, if she wins, will have a lot of things to un-speak which she will find very difficult to do. Bernie Sanders did not help on this one either.
Now you say, “I walk away, that I do not believe in this deal.” How can anybody believe in you anymore?”
Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong also came out with an unsubstantiated statistic claiming “40% of Americans” want to build a wall:
“It is the perception of their interest. Because Americans are preoccupied with jobs, upset about globalization, so they say, “How about turning inwards? 40 per cent support building a wall. It does not mean it is in the interest of those 40 per cent to build a wall, but that is the sentiment and it is not helpful. If that continues to be the sentiment, I think it is negative for America and it is negative for the world.”
On South China Sea, PM Lee changed his tune and deviated from his earlier stance on respecting the Hague’s ruling and went soft after China earlier criticised him for being a busybody.
“It is an issue where on the South China Sea itself, you are in a zero sum situation. But each of the other claimant states has a broader relationship with China, and none of them want to push it to the brink. So there is this game which will be played. How do you move, what are the trade-offs, and what are the alliances or partnerships which try to get formed and try to get broken? The Chinese are quite clear what their interests are and very consistent on pushing their interests.”
You may view the full transcript here.