Wednesday, December 6, 2023

US State Department Backs India’s Autonomy on Canadian Allegations Tells “They can speak for themselves…”

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US State Department spokesperson Matthew Miller emphasized that India is capable of addressing the Canadian allegations concerning the killing of Khalistani terrorist Hardeep Singh Nijjar and the ongoing investigations independently. He conveyed that Washington has encouraged New Delhi to cooperate with the Canadian inquiry.

During a press briefing, State Department spokesperson Matthew Miller was questioned about whether the issue of Canadian allegations would be discussed during the meeting between India’s External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar and US Secretary of State Antony Blinken.

Miller responded, “One of the practices I’m committed to is not disclosing in public what Secretary Blinken or other representatives of this department will communicate in their meetings until the Secretary has had the opportunity to convey it directly to his counterparts.” He continued, stating, “We have consistently engaged with the Indian Government on this matter and have urged them to collaborate. This engagement and the call for cooperation will persist.”

When further questioned about India’s response to the US’ request for cooperation in the investigation, Miller declined to comment on private diplomatic conversations. He stated, “They can express their stance. I won’t divulge what is discussed in confidential diplomatic dialogues. I will only reiterate what we have expressed, which is our call for them to cooperate with the Canadian investigation.”

Recently, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau made a contentious statement accusing the Indian government of involvement in the killing of Khalistani terrorist Hardeep Singh Nijjar. However, India has vehemently refuted these allegations, dismissing them as ‘baseless’ and ‘motivated.’

Previously, Antony Blinken had expressed Washington’s deep concern about the claims made by the Canadian Prime Minister regarding India’s role in the killing of Hardeep Singh Nijjar. He stressed the importance of accountability and underscored the significance of allowing the investigation to progress and yield results.

Blinken remarked, “We are deeply concerned about the allegations that Prime Minister Trudeau has raised. We have been in close and continuous consultation with our Canadian counterparts, not just consulting but also coordinating on this matter.” He added, “From our perspective, it is imperative that the Canadian investigation proceeds, and it is crucial for India to collaborate with the Canadians on this inquiry. We seek accountability, and it is vital that the investigation unfolds and leads to a conclusive outcome.”

It’s worth noting that Canada has not yet presented any public evidence to substantiate its claim regarding the killing of Hardeep Singh Nijjar.

In response to Canadian Prime Minister Trudeau’s allegations of Indian involvement in the killing, India has suspended its visa services in Canada. In the midst of strained relations, India has issued an advisory to its citizens and travellers to Canada, urging them to exercise “utmost caution” due to the increasing prevalence of anti-India activities, politically sanctioned hate crimes, and criminal violence in the country.

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