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Lee Kuan Yew honoured by Russia

Former Prime Minister Lee Kuan Yew was conferred the title of Honorary Doctor of the Diplomatic Academy of the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs on Thursday.

SINGAPORE: Former Prime Minister Lee Kuan Yew was conferred the title of Honorary Doctor of the Diplomatic Academy of the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs on Thursday.

The title is bestowed upon Russian and foreign scholars, diplomats, and political and public figures for outstanding achievements in the fields of theoretical research and diplomacy, and for contributions to promote mutual understanding between Russia and the rest of the world, a Ministry of Foreign Affairs statement said.

Singapore's Ambassador to Russia, Ms Lim Kheng Hua, accepted the title on Mr Lee's behalf from the Academy's Rector, Mr Evgeny Bazhanov, in a ceremony held in Moscow.

In an acceptance speech delivered on behalf of Mr Lee, Ms Lim thanked Russia for the honour.

She said: "Singapore and Russia enjoy stable and cordial relations, even if we do not always see eye-to-eye on every international issue."

She spoke about how the United States and China are "groping towards a new modus vivendi".

"This will not be easy," she said. "The effort is complex and fraught with many challenges: political, military, economic and even psychological."

She said that when the US and China "eventually establish a new equilibrium, the rest of the world will take dressing from it. For now, US-China relations already set the tone for East Asia."

She noted that a vast part of Russia lies in East Asia.

"Since Tsarist times, Russia has played a major role in the region, particularly in Northeast Asia," she said.

"Russia therefore cannot but be affected by these developments and must find a new modus vivendi with China too." 

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