#India-Canada: S Jaishankar At UN Amid Canada Row: "Response To Terrorism Can't Be..."


India on Tuesday evening told the United Nations "political convenience" cannot be the basis for a response to terrorism or extremism, and called on the global community to respect the rules-based order and the UN Charter. Addressing the UN General Assembly, External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar also called on nations to not interfere in the internal affairs of others.

Jaishankar's remarks - coming amid the India-Canada diplomatic row and continuing tension along the border with China - have been interpreted as a jab at both countries.

"... nor must we countenance that political convenience determines responses to terrorism, extremism and violence. Similarly, respect for territorial integrity and non-interference in internal affairs cannot be exercises in cherry-picking. When reality departs from the rhetoric, we must have the courage to call it out... without genuine solidarity, there can never be real trust," he said.

India and Canada have been locked in a diplomatic row since Prime Minister Justin Trudeau last week claimed "agents of Delhi" were involved in the killing of Khalistani terrorist Hardeep Singh Nijjar.

Nijjar - wanted by India on terrorism charges - was a Canadian citizen who was shot dead outside a gurudwara in Canada's British Columbia in June. India has unequivocally denied Canada's "absurd" allegations and pointed out Trudeau's government has yet to share evidence to back its claim.

The Indian government has also flagged "politically condoned hate crimes and criminal violence" in Canada, which is home to a large and politically influential Sikh community that is expected to play a major role in the outcome of that country's next general election in 2025.

Trudeau - under heavy fire since before he made the allegations - doubled down on the claims Sunday, telling reporters information about the "credible allegations" were shared with India "weeks ago". "We hope they engage with us so we can get to the bottom of this very serious matter."

India has pointed out Canada has ignored Khalistani terror threats growing from its territories, and repeatedly failed to act on "specific evidence about criminal activities" by Canada-based individuals.

India has called Canada's accusations "primarily politically driven" and complained of "prejudice" because that country has chosen not to act against red-flagged criminal activities.

Jaishankar's words have also been seen as a dig at China as India continues to demand Beijing returns to pre-April 2020 positions (before the Galwan Valley clashes) along the Line of Actual Control.

Since the clashes Indian and Chinese troops have been locked in a stand-off for over three years in certain friction points in eastern Ladakh, even as they complete disengagement from other areas.

These disengagements follow extensive diplomatic and military talks. Last month India and China held a 19th round of Corps Commander-level talks, at which they agreed to maintain on-ground stability.

India has consistently said peace and tranquility along the LAC are key for normalisation of overall ties.

Jaishankar's jab at China has also been seen against the backdrop of Beijing repeatedly blocking Delhi's efforts to designate as 'terrorists' individuals who threaten the country's security and integrity.

In June India slammed China for halting a proposal that would allow the UN to designate Pakistan-based Lashka-e-Taiba terrorist Sajid Mir as a 'global terrorist'.

In a sharply-worded statement India said if the proposal failed - despite several member states, including the United States, co-sponsoring it, "we have righteous reasons to believe something is genuinely wrong with the global counter-terrorism architecture".

"If we cannot get established terrorists, who have been banned across global landscapes, proscribed by the United Nations - for petty geopolitical interests - then we really do NOT have the genuine political will to sincerely fight this challenge of terrorism," Delhi asserted.

On Pakistan, India hit back last week after caretaker Prime Minister Anwarul Haq Kakar raised the Kashmir issue at the General Assembly. "Pakistan has become a habitual offender when it comes to misusing this August forum to peddle baseless and malicious propaganda against India..."

"We reiterate that Jammu and Kashmir are an integral part of India. Matters pertaining to the union territories of Jammu and Kashmir, and Ladakh, are purely internal to India. Pakistan has no locus standi to comment..." the Indian government said.

(With inputs from agencies)


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