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28/03/24 | 8:52 am | India

Canadian PM Trudeau says, ‘Looking to work constructively with Indian govt’

Responding to the update on the investigation regarding the killing of India-designated terrorist Hardeep Singh Nijjar, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, after taking a long pause, said that they are looking to work constructively with the Indian government to get to the bottom of the matter, according to the Canada-based media channel, Cable Public Affairs Channel (CPAC).

Trudeau was asked, “How is India’s cooperation shaping up on the assassination investigations of Canadian citizen Hardeep Singh Nijjar when Canada has credible allegations and India expects Canada to complete its own investigation first?”

The Canadian PM said, “The killing of a Canadian citizen on Canadian soil is something that we all should take extremely seriously.”

“The credible allegations that agents of the Indian government were involved in–that is something that we did not declare lightly, but our responsibility to protect all Canadians from illegal actions by foreign governments is something that, as a country grounded in diversity, we need to take very seriously,” he added.

Further, he said that the Canadian government is ensuring that appropriate investigations are being done, according to a video shared by the CPAC.

“That’s why we’ve been unequivocal about standing up for the rule of law and ensuring that the appropriate investigations are being done in full accordance with our justice system and our police independence,” Canadian PM Trudeau said.

Moreover, Trudeau said that they are working constructively with the government of India to get to the bottom of this.

“At the same time, we are working. We’re looking to work constructively with the government of India to get to the bottom of this, to understand how this could have happened, and to make sure that no Canadians are ever vulnerable again to foreign interference by any international power,” he added.

The apparent targeted killing of the president of the Guru Nanak Sikh Gurdwara ultimately led to accusations from Prime Minister Justin Trudeau that the government of India had a hand in the killing–a claim that has been denied by India–and has led to the deterioration of diplomatic ties between the two countries.

Earlier this month, purported video footage of the killing of Hardeep Singh Nijjar surfaced, showing Nijjar being shot by armed men in what has been described as a ‘contract killing’, Canada-based CBC News reported.

Nijjar, who was designated a terrorist by the National Investigation Agency in 2020, was shot and killed as he came out of a Gurdwara in Surrey, British Columbia, on the evening of June 18, 2023.

The attack is described as being ‘highly coordinated’ and involved six men and two vehicles. Meanwhile, almost nine months later, the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) is yet to name suspects or make arrests in relation to Nijjar’s killing.

However, India has rejected the allegations, calling them “absurd and motivated.” According to the Ministry of External Affairs, Canada has not been able to present any evidence to back its claims over the killing. (ANI)

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