New Delhi: Claims and counter-claims seemed to have abated over the last few weeks in the India-Canada diplomatic row over the murder of Khalistani terrorist Hardeep Singh Nijjar on Canadian soil.
But fresh remarks by Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau could lead to an escalation in animosity between the two nations.
Trudeau said that the world will become “more dangerous” for everyone if “bigger countries can violate international law without consequences.”
Trudeau earlier accused the involvement of Indian agents in the killing of Nijjar, who was shot dead outside a Vancouver gurdwara, in Canada’s British Columbia, in June. Ties between India and Canada have been strained since then, with New Delhi terming the allegations as “absurd” and “motivated”, and staying that no evidence was provided.
Asked by the media on Saturday whether the US should take up the Nijjar issue with India on Canada’s behalf, Trudeau reiterated his earlier claim.
“From the very beginning, when we learnt of credible allegations that agents of the Indian government are involved in the killing of a Canadian citizen on Canadian soil, we reached out to India to ask them to work with us in getting to the bottom of this matter. We also reached out to our friends and allies, like the United States, and others to work on these really serious violation of international law and sovereignty of a democracy. This is something we are taking very very seriously, we will continue to work with all partners as law enforcement and investigative agencies continue to do their work,” the Canadian PM stated.
“Canada is a country that will always stand up for the rule of law because if might starts to make right, if bigger countries can violate international law without consequences, then the whole world gets more dangerous for everyone,” he added.
“We have reached out to the Indian government and to partners around the world to get to the bottom of this, to take it seriously. That’s why we were so disappointed when India violated the Vienna convention and arbitratrily revoked the diplomatic immunity of over 40 Canadian diplomats in India,” Trudeau said.
“We have serious reasons to believe that agents of the government of India could have been involved in the killing of a Canadian citizen on Canadian soil. And India’s response is to kick out a whole bunch of Canadian diplomats by violating their rights under the Vienna convention. That is of concern to countries around the world because if a given country,” Trudeau elaborated.
The response from Indian government, possibly from Ministry of External Affairs, is awaited.