Wednesday, February 07, 2007

A Chinese National Anthem Error in Grenada

Grenadian police band leader reassigned

By MICHAEL BASCOMBE, Associated Press WriterWed Feb 7, 1:05 AM ET

The leader of a Grenadian police band that performed Taiwan's national anthem at the inauguration of a China-financed stadium has been temporarily relieved of his music duties, an official said Tuesday.

Inspector Bryan Hurst will not lead the Royal Grenada Police Band while investigators determine how his ensemble came to play the anthem of Taiwan instead of its rival to open the $40 million Queen's Park stadium on Saturday, according to police spokesman Troy Garvey.

Garvey said the inquiry into the diplomatic gaffe will "utilize all the resources" of the Caribbean island's national force and that Police Commissioner Winston James was expected to formally apologize to Chinese Ambassador Qian Hongshan.

Qian and scores of blue-uniformed Chinese laborers who built the stadium were visibly uncomfortable as Taiwan's anthem reverberated inside the 20,000-seat venue, which will host matches during the cricket World Cup beginning next month.

Chinese Embassy officials did not immediately return calls for comment on Tuesday.

Meanwhile, the Chinese delegation did not attend a reception hosted by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs for foreign dignitaries Monday evening.

China and Taiwan split in 1949 amid a civil war, and Beijing claims the democratically run island is a renegade province that should not have diplomatic ties with other countries.

The Asian rivals have both campaigned aggressively to win the allegiance of Caribbean nations. Grenada switched diplomatic allegiance from Taiwan to China in 2005.

No comments: