We are serious about building closer ties with India, says Canadian PM Justin Trudeau amid ongoing row over Nijjar killing
Canadian PM Justin Trudeau has said his nation is still committed to building closer ties with India despite repeating that there are “credible allegations” that the Indian government was involved in the killing of Sikh terrorist Hardeep Singh Nijjar in British Columbia just last June.
Trudeau's allegation on Nijjar's killing has triggered a row between India and Canada.
Speaking at a press conference in Montreal, Trudeau was quoted as saying by the National Post that he thinks it is “extremely important” that Canada and its allies continue to engage “constructively and seriously” with India given its growing importance on the world stage.
“India is a growing economic power and important geopolitical player. And as we presented with our Indo-Pacific strategy, just last year, we’re very serious about building closer ties with India,” he told reporters.
“At the same time, obviously, as a rule of law country, we need to emphasize that India needs to work with Canada to ensure that we get the full facts of this matter," he was quoted as saying by the newspaper.
Great to meet my friend US Secretary of State @SecBlinken at State Department today.— Dr. S. Jaishankar (@DrSJaishankar) September 28, 2023
A wide ranging discussion, following up on PM @narendramodi’s June visit. Also exchanged notes on global developments.
Laid the groundwork of our 2+2 meeting very soon. pic.twitter.com/mOw9SIX1dO
“The Americans have been with us in speaking to the Indian government about how important it is that they be involved in following up on the credible allegations that agents of the Indian government killed a Canadian citizen on Canadian soil,” said Trudeau.
He made the remarks at a time when Indian External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar met US Secretary of State Antony Blinken.
"Good to be back here. And we, of course, had the prime minister here this summer. Thanks to the US for all the support to the G20 Summit," S Jaishankar told the media in the presence of Blinken ahead of the meeting held at the State Department.
Blinken said he had "very good discussions" over the last few weeks including the one at the G20 and on the margins of the UN General Assembly session in New York.
He said he was looking forward to his discussions with the Indian counterpart.
Jaishankar's meeting with Blinken was scheduled much before the crisis with Canada broke out.
According to reports, the US has been urging India to cooperate in the Canadian investigation into the killing of Khalistani separatist Hardeep Singh Nijjar in British Columbia early this year.
India, which designated Nijjar as a terrorist in 2020, has rejected the allegations calling them "absurd" and "motivated".
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