India-Canada row: Foreign Minister Mélanie Joly confirms contact with EAM Jaishankar amid strained relations | Mint
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Business News/ News / World/  India-Canada row: Foreign Minister Mélanie Joly confirms contact with EAM Jaishankar amid strained relations
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India-Canada row: Foreign Minister Mélanie Joly confirms contact with EAM Jaishankar amid strained relations

India-Canada row: Canada's foreign minister, Mélanie Joly, confirms being in contact with India's External Affairs Minister Jaishankar, marking the first ministerial contact since the row began. She emphasizes the importance of the relationship and protecting Canadians' safety.

Canada's Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Foreign Minister Melanie Joly (REUTERS)Premium
Canada's Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Foreign Minister Melanie Joly (REUTERS)

India-Canada row: The relations between Prime Minister Narendra Modi-led India and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau-led Canada seemed to have touched a bitter note during the Group of 20 Summit (G-20), that was held in Delhi this year. Later a statement, an allegation by the Canadian PM seemed to have pinned the nail in the coffin. PM Trudeau had said that Canada had ‘credible evidence’ that India and its intelligentsia were involved in the June killing of Canada-based Pro-Khalistan terrorist Hardeep Singh Nijjar in Surrey. 

The months that followed saw apprehension of Canada restricting Visa for Indians, while India restricted entry for Canadian citizens in India. Canada also removed a large chunk of diplomats from India along with their families, keeping only the New Delhi embassy operational. 

For the first time since diplomatic tension between the two countries seemed to have become sour, Canada's foreign minister Mélanie Joly has said that they are in touch with India's External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar. 

Hindustan Times reports that during an event in Toronto Mélanie Joly said, “I’ve been in contact with the foreign minister, minister Jaishankar and we will continue to do so."

Notably, this is the first time since the row began of Nijjar killing that either side has confirmed being in ministerial contact. 

The HT report further states that during her speech at the Economic Club of Canada, she said, “It is important to remember this is one moment in a relationship that spans decades and is built upon strong connection between our two people."

She said the relationship was “facing a difficult moment." Joly's words seemed to have echoed what EAM Jaishankar had said few days ago that the relations between India and Canada are going through a difficult phase. Jaishankar had said the relationship between India and Canada right now is going through a difficult phase, adding that India has problems with certain segment of Canadian politics.

Mélanie Joly also stressed, “We stand by the decision to inform Canadians of credible allegations around the killing of a Canadian citizen. This is, at its core, a question of protecting our national sovereignty and Canadians’ safety. In addressing this serious matter, we remain engaged with the Indian Government."

Joly said she will continue to speak to her Indian counterpart as Canada has “a long-term approach when it comes to India."

On 26 October, India's high commission in Canada said that the country's officials will resume processing some types of visa applications for Canadians applying from across the country as well as abroad.

The decision came a month after New Delhi suspended the services in Canada and for Canadian citizens worldwide as tensions flared between the two nations last month following Prime Minister Justin Trudeau's allegations of the "potential" involvement of Indian agents in the killing of Khalistani extremist Hardeep Singh Nijjar on June 18 in British Columbia.

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Published: 31 Oct 2023, 06:24 PM IST
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