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Canada, Sep 30: Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has emphasized Canada’s strong interest in fostering closer ties with India, recognizing it as an emerging economic power and an important player in global geopolitics. However, he has urged New Delhi to cooperate with Ottawa to ensure that they have all the necessary information regarding the murder of Hardeep Singh Nijjar.
Tensions between India and Canada escalated after Trudeau made explosive allegations about the “possible” involvement of Indian agents in the killing of Khalistani extremist Nijjar on Canadian soil on June 18 in British Columbia. It is noteworthy that India declared Nijjar a terrorist in 2020.
India vehemently rejected these allegations, calling them “absurd” and “motivated”, and expelled a senior Canadian diplomat, in response to Ottawa expelling an Indian official over the matter. Despite these developments and “credible allegations” against India, Trudeau stressed Canada’s commitment to strengthening relations with India.
Speaking at a press conference in Montreal, Trudeau stressed the importance of constructive engagement with India because of its growing importance on the global stage. He acknowledged India’s position as a rising economic power and an important geopolitical actor. However, he also underlined that India should cooperate with Canada to ensure that all relevant facts related to the case are revealed while maintaining Canada’s commitment to the rule of law.
Trudeau also noted that he has received assurances from the United States that Secretary of State Antony Blinken will discuss allegations of India’s involvement in Nijjar’s killing during his meeting with his Indian counterpart in Washington. However, the India-Canada diplomatic standoff was not explicitly mentioned in the US State Department’s readout on the Blinken-Jaishankar meeting.
Trudeau stressed that addressing such credible allegations, particularly those involving the murder of a Canadian citizen on Canadian soil, is a matter that all democracies and law-abiding countries should take seriously. Should take. He said Canada is taking a measured and responsible approach to engagement with all its partners, including the Government of India.
Trudeau initially made these allegations in the House of Commons on September 18. While Conservative leader Pierre Poilievre called for the release of more information, New Democratic Party leader Jagmeet Singh, who had received an intelligence briefing on the matter and had a security clearance, arrived. Same conclusion as Trudeau.