Originally published by The Phnom Penh Post,26 May 2010
TWO American lawmakers have submitted legislation designed to punish Cambodia for last year’s deportation of 20 Uighur asylum seekers by barring the reduction or elimination of more than US$300 million in debt as well as the extension of duty-free status to Cambodian garments imported into the country.
The bill, dubbed the Cambodian Trade Act of 2010, was introduced before the US house of representatives on Thursday by William Delahunt, a Democrat from Massachusetts, on behalf of himself and Dana Rohrabacher, a Republican from California.
In an email to the Post, Rohrabacher said Tuesday that he could not comment on the likelihood that the bill will be passed, and added, “Whether it passes or not is less important than drawing attention to the misdeeds of the Cambodian dictatorship.”
Last December, Cambodia deported 20 Uighur asylum seekers back to China, drawing criticism from observers who expressed concern that the Uighurs would face persecution there. Almost immediately after the deportation, China signed US$1.2 billion worth of economic aid agreements with Cambodia, fuelling speculation that the Uighurs had been returned to please Beijing.
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Originally published by The Wall Street Journal, 25 May 2010
By ANDREW BROWNE, ANDREW BATSON And AARON BACK
By BEIJING—The most wide-ranging dialogue in the history of modern U.S.-China relations ended with some accord on contentious issues of currency and trade, but underlined a fundamental shift in the relationship between Washington and a newly assertive Beijing.
Although China offered few major concessions in two days of discussions at the annual Strategic and Economic Dialogue, which ended on Tuesday, the U.S. praised the outcome.
China pledged to gradually reform its currency-exchange rate, but without offering any timetable. On Beijing’s drive to promote “indigenous innovation,” which foreign companies fear is a protectionist ploy, China held out hope of a resolution within the World Trade Organization—repeating a pledge it had made before. And Beijing promised to “work together with the U.S. and other parties” to resolve the crisis over allegations that North Korea torpedoed a Southern patrol vessel, but it gave no specifics.
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Originally published by Foreign Policy,MAY 25, 2010
BY ELIZABETH ECONOMY and ADAM SEGAL
“This is not a G-2.” With those words, Deputy Secretary of State James Steinberg finally sounded on May 11 at the Brookings Institution the death knell for the much-touted, if misguided, idea that China and the United States would band together to solve the world’s problems.
The idea of a “G-2” was first introduced by C. Fred Bergsten, director of Peterson Institute for International Economic, as a mechanism for promoting agreement between the two sides primarily to address international economic issues. However, it migrated to strategic issues, championed by old Washington hands like Henry Kissinger and Zbigniew Brzezinski. The idea resonated with the White House and Foggy Bottom, where hopes were high for joint efforts to solve the financial crisis and address climate change. As Secretary of State Hillary Clinton remarked in a February 2009 visit to Beijing, “The opportunities for us to work together are unmatched anywhere in the world.”
That hope was short-lived. It has become painfully clear during the first year of Barack Obama’s administration that mismatched interests, values, and capabilities make it difficult for Washington and Beijing to work together to address global challenges. China’s unwillingness to sit down with the United States and its maneuverings with India, Brazil, and South Africa to undermine a larger agreement at Copenhagen were clear signs that building a special relationship would not be easy. America’sapproval of arms sales to Taiwan in January and the Dalai Lama’s visit with Obama in February returned both sides to old suspicions and sensitivities.
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