Weeks before raising explosive allegations that Indian officials were involved in the murder of Sikh separatist leader Hardeep Singh Nijjar, Canadian officials warned allies including the United States about the killing. The Washington Post reported that calls for public condemnation of the incident were met with reluctance.
The same highlights the diplomatic challenges facing the Biden administration and its allies as they seek to navigate relations with India, a key regional player, the report said.
In the weeks leading up to the Group of 20 (G20) summit to be held in New Delhi in September, senior officials from the Five Eyes countries have Behind-the-scenes discussions were held between them.
However, there was no public mention of it ahead of the summit, which was considered a key event for Prime Minister Narendra Modi, according to the Washington Post.
Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s announcement of “credible allegations” in Parliament has caused a serious rift in bilateral relations with India, resulting in the expulsion of an Indian diplomat in Ottawa, the report says. ing.
“Canadian security officials are actively pursuing credible allegations of a potential link between Indian government agents and the murder of Canadian citizen Hardeep Singh Nijjar,” Prime Minister Trudeau said Monday. Ta.
However, New Delhi on Tuesday confirmed that Canadian operatives were involved in the killing of pro-Khalistan leader Hardeep Singh Nijjar, leader of the Khalistan Tigers, who is listed as a “terrorist”. rejected the claim.
In retaliation for the Trudeau government’s expulsion of an Indian diplomat, New Delhi has ordered a Canadian envoy accused of spying for India in India to leave the country within five days, the Post added in the report. Ta.
Prime Minister Trudeau stressed that Canada had no intention of provoking or escalating the situation, but India rejected Canada’s accusations as “absurd and motivated” and focused on the Khalistani population protected by Canada. The Washington Post reported that it had been passed on to terrorists and extremists.
“We have reviewed and rejected the Canadian Prime Minister’s statement in Parliament and the Foreign Minister’s statement that the Government of India was involved in any action,” the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) said in a statement. Violence in Canada is irrational and motivated. ”
The report notes that Nijjar was designated as a terrorist by security agencies in 2020 and is accused of supporting attacks in Punjab state, and that India will seek his extradition in 2022 and that in the same year he was declared a terrorist in Punjab state. It added that it had linked Mr. Nijjar to the murder of a Hindu priest in .
According to the report, India was pressuring countries with significant Sikh communities, including Canada, Australia, the United Kingdom and the United States, to suppress the Khalistan movement. Pro-Khalistan protests erupted in London and San Francisco, and tensions with the Indian government escalated.
The diplomatic spat comes as Western countries seek to strengthen their geopolitical and trade partnership with India while refraining from criticizing Prime Minister Modi’s authoritarian policies.
South Asia analyst Michael Kugelman pointed to the dilemma faced by Western governments that recognize Canada as an ally but prioritize their relationship with India as an important strategic partner.
According to the Washington Post, there was tension at the Group of 20 summit in India in September, with Prime Minister Trudeau absent from formal bilateral talks with Prime Minister Modi. The Khalistan issue was discussed on the sidelines of the summit, further straining relations.
Canadian Foreign Minister Melanie Joly said Trudeau had raised the allegations with President Biden and British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak, and the matter was expected to be discussed at the United Nations General Assembly, The Washington Post reported.
In response, Washington expressed deep concern and stressed the importance of a Canadian investigation and bringing the perpetrators to justice. Australia has also raised this issue with India at a senior level.
The allegations surrounding Nijjar’s assassination have intensified long-standing issues regarding Khalistan supporters in Canada, and could have implications for global geopolitics and foreign interference.
While the situation remains complex, it highlights the delicate balance that Western countries must maintain between allies and strategic partnerships in a rapidly evolving global space, The Washington Post reported.