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China makes Sri Lanka flag doormat; Lanka raises concern

Sri Lanka issued an official statement on the recent reports on social media platforms of a ‘Sri Lanka flag non-slip doormat’on Friday ,March 12, 2021.They have raised the matter with the Chinese embassy in the country. According to an official release, the Foreign Secretary Admiral Jayanath Colombage asked the Sri Lanka Embassy in Beijing to contact the manufacturer of the doormat in China. He also made it sure that the  Chinese Embassy in Colombo is informed about the usage of Sri Lanka’s national flag as a doormat.

“The Sri Lanka Embassy in Washington DC has also been instructed to follow up on the matter with the advertising platform Amazon,” read the official statement.The flag is  made of polyester material.The flag has been manufactured by  the  Chinese company ‘shenghong lin’.It was advertised to be sold on e-commerce company Amazon as Sri Lanka flag non-slip doormat. The cost of the flag is close to about RS 900 INR.

In an attempt to alleviate the issue, the Chinese embassy in Sri Lanka also issued a statement saying that the ’embassy is aware of some concerns about inappropriate advertising of Sri Lanka National flag’. The Chinese embassy in a statement was eager to blame Amazon while making zero mention of the Chinese company’s involvement. It stated that the embassy has ‘learned that thousands of similar products with flags of various nations, manufactured by sellers from different countries, are available on this global online retailer’. In a tweet by the Chinese screenshots were also shown of the Amazon website searche ‘national flag mat’.

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The embassy also underlined that as an all-weather friend and the closest ally, China has been respecting and enabling Sri Lanka for its peace, prosperity, and dignity for decades, whether in bilateral fields or international fora. China is engaged in ‘debt trap’ diplomacy in the lease of Hambantota port with Sri Lanka.

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