[아시아엔=최정아 기자] 리콴유 싱가포르 초대 총리가 향년 91세로 타계했다. 1965년 말레이시아로부터 독립한 싱가포르는 올해 독립50주년을 맞는다. 리 초대 총리는 ‘불모지’였던 작은 땅 싱가포르를 아시아 경제 강국으로 발전시킨 인물이라 평가받고 있다.
싱가포르 <스트레이트타임즈>(The Straits Times)은 “리콴유 전 총리는 여론이나 대중들의 인기에 영합하지 않았다. 그가 추진했던 정책들의 결과가 끝내 결실을 맺었을 때에야 시민들이 자신을 돌아봐줄 것이라고 생각했다”고 보도했다.
반면 말레이시아의 <뉴스트레이트 타임즈>(The New Straits Times)는 “말레이시아는 싱가포르와의 민족성·정체성 차이 때문에 한 나라가 될 수 없다고 판단했고, 싱가포르정부에게 2년 뒤 말레이시아에서 분리 독립하라고 명령했다. 이후 리콴유는 국영방송을 통해 싱가포르의 독립을 선언했다. 이는 리콴유가 남긴 정치적 후회 중 하나로 꼽는다.”고 보도했다.
중국의 <인민일보>(The People’s Daily)의 경우, 리 전 총리의 타계소식과 장례식 일정 등을 비교적 짧게 보도했다. <인민일보>는 “25일부터 28일까지 의사당에 안치돼 오전10시~8시까지 국민의 조문을 받을 예정이며, 장례는 29일 오후 2시 싱가포르대학교 문화센터에서 국장으로 치러진다”고 보도했다. ?<아시아엔>은 싱가포르, 말레이시아, 중국 주요매체 보도 원문을?싣는다.
싱가포르 <스트레이트타임즈>(The Straits Times)
“리콴유 전 총리는 여론이나 대중들의 인기에 영합하지 않았다. 그가 추진했던 정책들의 결과가 끝내 결실을 맺었을 때에야 시민들이 자신을 돌아봐줄 것이라고 생각했다. 리 전 총리를 인터뷰한 내용을 담은 책 <리콴유>에 따르면, ‘나는 매우 완강한 사람이다. 만약 어떤 일을 해야겠다고 결정하면, 내 영혼과 마음을 다해 밀어붙인다. 모든 사람이 나에게 등을 돌려도, 그것이 옳다고 생각하면 나는 그대로 진행한다. 이것이 리더가 해야 할 일이다’고 말했다.”
Singapore’s founding father Mr Lee Kuan Yew dies aged 91
Singapore’s founding father, Mr Lee Kuan Yew, has died, leaving behind the unlikely nation that he and his colleagues fostered and built over five decades as his lasting legacy.
Mr Lee, who would have turned 92 this September, died at the Singapore General Hospital where he had been warded for severe pneumonia since Feb 5.
The elder Mr Lee is widely regarded as the man most instrumental in shaping Singapore, from the time he and his People’s Action Party colleagues pushed for self-government in the 1950s, to their quest for merger with Malaysia in the early 1960s, and their efforts to secure the country’s survival after independence was thrust on it on Aug 9,1965.
He famously wept on that occasion, which he immortalised as “a moment of anguish”, not only as he had believed deeply in a unified Malaysia as a multi-racial society, but also as he must have sensed the enormity of the task for this fledgling state to make a living in an inhospitable world.
He would lead a pioneer generation of Singaporeans to overcome a series of daunting challenges, from rehousing squatters in affordable public housing, rebuilding the economy after the sudden pull-out of British forces and the oil shocks of the 1970s, and a major economic recession in the mid 1980s. Through it all, Mr Lee would exhort his people to take heart and “never fear” as they looked forward to a better life.
“This country belongs to all of us. We made this country from nothing, from mud-flats… Over 100 years ago, this was a mud-flat, swamp. Today, this is a modern city.
Ten years from now, this will be a metropolis. Never fear!” he thundered at a grassroots event in Sembawang in September 1965.
He delivered on this promise, earning the trust of generations of voters. This would see his party returned to office repeatedly over three decades. By the time he stepped down in 1990, he had served 31 years as PM, from 1959 to 1990. At the age of 67, he chose to hand over the premiership to Mr Goh Chok Tong, and took on the role of senior minister, serving as guide and mentor in the Cabinet.
Noting this unusual willingness to relinquish power, Time magazine wrote in 1991: “What really sets this complex man apart from Asia’s other nation-builders is what he didn’t do: he did not become corrupt, and he did not stay in power too long. Mao, Suharto, Marcos and Ne Win left their countries on the verge of ruin with no obvious successor. Lee left Singapore with a per capita GDP of $14,000, his reputation gilt-edged and an entire tier of second-generation leaders to take over His decades in office were not uncontroversial. Having survived life-and-death battles with the communists and communalists in Singapore’s tumultuous early years, he made plain that he was not averse to wielding the proverbial big stick, declaring his readiness to confront political foes with “knuckle dusters”. He insisted that he would not rule by opinion polls, rejecting the idea that popular government entailed a need to be popular through his term, believing that voters would come round when they eventually saw the results of policies he had pushed through. –
As he said in an interview for the book, Lee Kuan Yew: The Man And His Ideas: “I’m very determined. If I decide that something is worth doing, then I’ll put my heart and soul to it. The whole ground can be against me, but if I know it is right, I’ll do it. That’s the business of a leader.”
말레이시아 <뉴스트레이트 타임즈>(The New Straits Times)
싱가포르가 1963년 영국으로부터 독립을 선언하자, 리콴유는 싱가포르 혼자선 살아남기 힘들다고 판단했다. 이에 말레이시아와 연방을 맺기로 결정했다. 말레이시아는 싱가포르와의 민족·정체성 차이 때문에 한 나라가 될 수 없다고 판단했고, 싱가포르정부에게 2년 뒤 말레이시아에서 분리 독립하라고 명령했다. 이후 리콴유는 국영방송을 통해 싱가포르의 독립을 선언했다. 이는 리콴유가 남긴 정치적 후회 중 하나로 꼽는다.
Lee Kuan Yew dies at 91
Lee Kuan Yew, who founded modern Singapore and was both feared for his authoritarian tactics and admired for turning the city-state into one of the world’s richest nations, died Monday, the government said. He was 91.
The country’s first and longest-serving prime minister, Lee guided Singapore through a traumatic split with Malaysia in 1965 and helped transform what was then a sleepy port city into a global trade and finance center. Although he could have remained in office for much longer, he stepped aside and handed over leadership of the ruling party, and the country, to a younger generation in 1990. Still, he remained an influential behind-the-scenes figure for many more years until his health deteriorated.
He faced criticism, though, for using tough tactics to consolidate power. He jailed some political rivals without trial for decades and brought defamation lawsuits against journalists and opposition politicians, which had a chilling effect on dissent.
Lee insisted that strict limits on free speech and public protest were necessary to maintain stability in a multiethnic and multi-religious country that witnessed race riots in the 1960s. That stability, he added, was needed to enable growth and raise living standards in a country with few natural resources.
Singapore declared independence from Britain in 1963, and Lee, believing his island couldn’t survive alone, brought it into the federation of neighboring states that became Malaysia. But the Malay leadership asked Singapore to leave after two years because of ideological differences. Lee wept on national television while announcing the breakup, which he later would call one of his biggest political regrets.
25일부터 28일까지 의사당에 안치돼 오전10시~8시까지 국민의 조문을 받을 예정이며, 장례는 29일 오후 2시 싱가포르대학교 문화센터에서 국장으로 치러진다.
Singapore former PM Lee Kuan Yew passes away at age of 91
Singapore had declared a period of national mourning for former Prime Minister Lee Kuan Yew from Monday to Sunday, the Prime Minister’s Office said Monday.
The announcement was made by Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong, who will address the nation “live” at 8 a.m.local time Monday.
Lee Kuan Yew, who had been struggling with severe pneumonia in hospital since Feb. 5, passed away Monday morning
As a mark of respect to the late founding prime minister, the state flags on all government buildings will be flown at half-mast from Monday to Sunday.
A private family wake will be held from Monday to Tuesday at Sri Temasek.
Lee’s body will lie in state at Parliament House from Wednesday to Saturday for the public to pay their respects.
Those who wish to pay their last respects at Parliament House can do so from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. daily from Wednesday to Saturday.
A State Funeral Service will be held at 2 p.m. on Sunday at the University Cultural Center, National University of Singapore.