Justin Trudeau says world should be worried about India's action
Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has said by revoking diplomatic immunity to 40 diplomats, India contravened a “very basic principle of diplomacy”. Continuing his tirade against India on Friday, he said New Delhi violated the Vienna Convention and all countries in the world should be worried about the move. He also broached the subject of the murder of Khalistan terrorist Hardeep Singh Nijjar. He also said India was making it "unbelievably difficult for life as usual to continue for millions of people in India and in Canada".
"The actions that the Government of India took this week are themselves contrary to international law. The Government of India decided to unilaterally revoke the diplomatic immunity of 40 Canadian diplomats in India. This is a violation of the Vienna Convention governing diplomacy...It is something that all countries in the world should be worried about and this is putting aside the allegations we made of a serious violation of international law with the alleged killing of a Canadian citizen on Canadian soil that the Indian government could have been involved in," he said.
"The Government of India decided to revoke the diplomatic protections of 40 diplomats working in India...The Indian government is making it unbelievably difficult for life as usual to continue for millions of people in India and in Canada and they're doing it by contravening a very basic principle of diplomacy," he added.
He was speaking at an event in Brampton on Friday.
Canada on Friday withdrew 41 diplomats from India days after New Delhi insisted on their removal alleging interference in internal affairs. New Delhi had asked for the removal saying it wanted to achieve parity in the number of diplomatic staff stationed in India and Canada.
The Ministry of External Affairs, in a statement on Friday, dismissed Canada's allegations that international law had been violated by its action.
"The state of our bilateral relations, the much higher number of Canadian diplomats in India, and their continued interference in our internal affairs warrant a parity in mutual diplomatic presence in New Delhi and Ottawa.”
Minister of Foreign Affairs Mélanie Joly said Ottawa has “decided not to reciprocate” even as the development was defined as “expulsion” of the Canadian diplomats.
India defended its actions for diplomatic parity by saying they are fully consistent with Article 11.1 of the Vienna Convention. This article states: “In the absence of specific agreement as to the size of the mission, the receiving State may require that the size of a mission be kept within limits considered by it to be reasonable and normal, having regard to circumstances and conditions in the receiving State and to the needs of the particular mission.”
Meanwhile, the US and UK, in support of Canada, have expressed concerns over the departure of Canadian diplomats from India.
"We are concerned by the departure of Canadian diplomats from India, in response to the Indian government's demand of Canada to significantly reduce its diplomatic presence in India," US State Department spokesperson Matthew Miller said.
"We do not agree with the decisions taken by the Indian government that have resulted in a number of Canadian diplomats departing India," a spokesperson for Britain's Foreign Office said.
With inputs from Reuters, ANI