This article by Kate Linthicum is published by Los Angeles Times. Here is an excerpt:
El Salvador’s president and the Chinese ambassador traded flatteries this month as they broke ground on a new national library, one of a slew of gifts China has promised this small mountainous nation as part of its vigorous quest to gain influence across Central America.
As they smiled for photos, Ambassador Ou Jianhong expressed her “greatest respect” for President Nayib Bukele, a polarizing leader who has assailed El Salvador’s democratic institutions and clashed repeatedly with U.S. officials. Bukele, in turn, praised Chinese President Xi Jinping, an authoritarian who has engineered China’s rise at the expense of civil liberties.
When the seven-story library is finished, it will loom above San Salvador’s central square, a symbol of China’s growing presence in the region and a reminder that as the relationship between the U.S. and El Salvador has chilled, El Salvador has found refuge in China’s deep pockets and warm embrace.
Read the full story here.