China offers Sri Lanka olive branch — and a veiled threat

Originally posted on Peace and Freedom:

Beijing (AFP) – President Xi Jinping worked to mend relations with Sri Lanka on Thursday as Chinese state-run media warned the island nation’s new government against shutting off billions in investments from Beijing.

Chinese President Xi Jinping (R) welcomes Sri Lanka’s President Maithripala Sirisena to a signing ceremony at the Great Hall of the People, in Beijing, on March 26, 2015 (AFP Photo/Feng Li)

Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena is on his first state visit to Beijing since taking office in January and is working to renegotiate more than $5.3 billion-worth of Chinese deals signed by his predecessor.

He has already suspended construction work on a major Chinese-funded “port city” commissioned by his predecessor Mahinda Rajapakse, who relied heavily on China to rebuild the country’s infrastructure during his decade in power.

New port of Colombo

New port of Colombo (Artist’s impression)

At the Great Hall of the People in Beijing Xi spoke of “a…

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