SINGAPORE (Sept 24): Often, our thinking about China is littered with contradictions. These are two opposite views that are simultaneously held by the same group or person. What is astounding is the way these two contradictory views are often not recognised as such by those who hold them.

Recently, China hosted more than 50 African countries. China is a significant source of development funds for African countries. Put aside for a moment a discussion about the motives, ulterior or otherwise, of this foreign aid assistance, and focus on the relationship between China and the aid recipient.

At the press conference in Beijing, President Xi Jinping was questioned about China’s policy of providing aid without preconditions. This supports corrupt governments and governments with poor human rights records, according to the questions from the press.

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