Mr Lee Kuan Yew meets old friend George Shultz

Mr Lee Kuan Yew meets old friend George Shultz
Mr Lee (centre) at a dinner on Monday night for Dr George Shultz, former top US diplomat and an old friend, and Mrs Charlotte Shultz. With them is PM Lee Hsien Loong.

SINGAPORE - Laughter and banter flowed freely on the 57th storey of the Marina Bay Sands on Monday, when Mr Lee Kuan Yew hosted an old friend and fellow elder statesman to dinner.

The mood was warm as Singapore's founding prime minister caught up with former top United States diplomat George Shultz over Franco-Asian fare at Sky on 57th. Mr Lee wore a navy blue Chinese-style jacket, and shared an embrace with the former secretary of state and secretary of the treasury as well as his wife Charlotte when they arrived.

The men have known each other since 1973. They have worked on forging closer political and economic ties between the United States and South-east Asia for decades, and tap each other's views on global developments regularly.

Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong and his wife Ho Ching, Education Minister Heng Swee Keat, Singapore Airlines chairman Stephen Lee and his wife, and Mr Lee Hsien Yang and his wife were also at the dinner.

Earlier on Monday, Dr Shultz, along with former US secretary of defence William Perry and former US senator Sam Nunn, called on PM Lee at the Istana.

The trio were here for the two-day Nuclear Threat Initiative meeting, which started on Tuesday.

A Foreign Affairs Ministry statement said PM Lee exchanged views with the Americans on regional and international developments. This included the work of the Nuclear Threat Initiative, a non-profit and non-partisan organisation working to reduce threats from nuclear, biological and chemical weapons.

yuenc@sph.com.sg

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