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Business News/ News / India/  India-Canada row: US envoy says Trudeau govt received intelligence from Five Eyes partners ahead of public allegations
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India-Canada row: US envoy says Trudeau govt received intelligence from Five Eyes partners ahead of public allegations

A diplomatic firestorm erupted this week with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau saying there were ‘credible reasons to believe that agents of the government of India were involved’ in Nijjar's death.

India's Prime Minister Narendra Modi (R) shakes hand with Canada's Prime Minister Justin Trudeau ahead of the G20 Leaders' Summit in New Delhi on September 9 (AFP)Premium
India's Prime Minister Narendra Modi (R) shakes hand with Canada's Prime Minister Justin Trudeau ahead of the G20 Leaders' Summit in New Delhi on September 9 (AFP)

The death of a Khalistani separatist leader has sparked an international crisis between India and Canada this week. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau claimed on Monday that there were ‘credible reasons to believe that agents of the government of India were involved’ in the killing of Hardeep Singh Nijjar. The assertion, US envoy David Cohen confirmed today, came after “shared intelligence among Five Eyes partners".

“There was shared intelligence among Five Eyes partners that helped lead Canada to make the statements that the Prime Minister made. In the days since, as diplomatic tensions continue to ratchet up — from Canada reassessing its staffing in India, to India suspending visa services for Canadians — there have been swirling questions about what intelligence is at the centre of this story, who was aware of it, and when," the US Ambassador to Canada told CTV News Channel.

Five Eyes is an intelligence grouping that comprises of the United States, United Kingdom, Australia, Canada and New Zealand. It entails both surveillance-based and signals intelligence. This is the first admission by any US government official about the sharing of intelligence by Five Eyes partners with Canada.

ALSO READ: Properties of Khalistani leader who threatened Canadian Hindus seized

A diplomatic firestorm erupted earlier this week after Trudeau linked Indian officials to the June murder. Nijjar – a Canadian citizen – was killed in British Columbia's Surrey on June 18. He was a wanted terrorist in India.

Earlier on Friday, the US had called for the Indian government to work with Canada on efforts to probe the murder. 

“We have been consulting throughout very closely with our Canadian colleagues – and not just consulting, coordinating with them – on this issue. And from our perspective, it is critical that the Canadian investigation proceed, and it would be important that India work with the Canadians on this investigation. We want to see accountability, and it’s important that the investigation run its course and lead to that result," Antony Blinken said.

(With inputs from agencies)

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Published: 23 Sep 2023, 04:43 PM IST
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