Entering the ongoing diplomatic standoff between India and Canada, David Cohen, the US Ambassador to Canada, has disclosed that it was “shared intelligence among Five Eyes partners” that prompted the Trudeau administration to suggest a possible connection between “agents” of the Indian government and the assassination of Sikh separatist leader Hardeep Singh Nijjar.
The Five Eyes alliance comprises Australia, Canada, New Zealand, the US, and the UK. Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau stirred controversy by claiming that Ottawa possessed credible intelligence linking Indian agents to Nijjar’s killing in Vancouver. India promptly dismissed these allegations as “absurd and motivated.”
Talking about the Five Eyes, Cohen revealed, “I will say this was a matter of shared intelligence information. There was a lot of communication between Canada and the United States about this, and I think that’s as far as I’m comfortable going.”
However, Cohen refrained from providing specific details about the intelligence shared by the Five Eyes partners with the Canadian government.
Trudeau had earlier stated that officials had been collaborating closely with intelligence agencies to establish a solid understanding of the situation.
Addressing the Canadian Parliament, Trudeau characterized any foreign government’s involvement in the killing of a Canadian citizen on Canadian soil as an unacceptable violation of the country’s sovereignty, stressing that it contradicts the fundamental principles by which free and democratic societies operate.
Cohen emphasized, “If the allegations prove to be true, it is a potentially very serious breach of the rules-based international order in which we like to function.”
US Secretary of State Antony Blinken expressed deep concern over Trudeau’s allegations and stressed the importance of accountability. He called for a thorough investigation and underscored the need for India to collaborate with Canada in the probe.
Trudeau, during a news conference in New York City, did not present any evidence to substantiate his claims. He reiterated that there were “credible reasons” to believe that India was linked to Nijjar’s death.
Hardeep Singh Nijjar, designated a terrorist in India, was fatally shot outside a Sikh temple in Surrey, British Columbia, on June 18. The escalating tensions and diplomatic standoff between India and Canada resulted in the expulsion of senior diplomats from both nations, with India suspending visa services for Canadian citizens.
Also Read: Bhutan’s Foreign Minister Tandi Dorji Applauds India’s G20 Presidency as ‘Remarkable
Catch all the Latest Business News, Breaking News Events, and Latest News Updates on NewsX