INDIAN media are reporting that US Secretary of State Antony Blinken on Friday called on India to cooperate with Canada in its investigation in connection with the assassination the then-president of Surrey’s Guru Nanak Sikh Gurdwara, Hardeep Singh Nijjar, on June 18 in the parking lot of the gurdwara.
The U.S., the UK, New Zealand and Australia have all asked India to cooperate with Canada in the investigation.
Blinken met with Indian External Affairs Minister Subrahmanyam Jaishankar in New Delhi on Friday and the two emphasized that the 2+2 Ministerial Dialogue between the two countries provides an important platform to enhance their efforts on a free, open, inclusive, and resilient Indo-Pacific and enable close collaboration on global challenges. They also discussed a full range of bilateral issues related to security, democracy, and economic cooperation, according to a statement issued on Friday by the U.S. State Department.
Blinken told the media in India: “We think it is very important that India works with Canada on its investigation, and that they find a way to resolve this difference in a cooperative way.”
He added: “But that really does go with Canada moving its investigation forward and India working with Canada on it. And that’s something that I’ve discussed with our Indian counterparts, including today.”
Blinken noted that India and Canada were two of the U.S.’s closest friends and partners and he wanted them to resolve any differences or disputes that they have “as a friend of both.”
Indian Foreign Secretary Vinay Kwatra told the media that India had told the U.S. of its serious concerns about the activities of pro-Khalistani elements in Canada.
He also referred to the recent video posted by Sikhs for Justice general counsel Gurpatwant Singh Pannun in which he repeatedly warns those intending to travel by Air India flights from November 19 onwards, saying that their lives could be in danger.
Kwatra said that the video “presents a very serious security concern for the Indian interest.”