The UK, Australia, and the US, the close allies of Canada and members of the "Five Eyes" intelligence-sharing alliance, have conveyed serious concerns regarding Prime Minister Justin Trudeau's claim of a "potential link" between Indian government officials and the assassination of Khalistani leader Hardeep Singh Nijjar in June.
After the Canadian PM's grave allegations against India in the country's parliament, the Indian Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) termed them as “absurd and motivated”. The MEA stressed that such “unsubstantiated allegations seek to shift the focus from Khalistani terrorists...who have been provided shelter in Canada and continue to threaten India’s sovereignty”.
In response to Ottawa's highly publicised expulsion of an Indian official linked to the death of the Khalistani leader, New Delhi has likewise expelled a "high-ranking Canadian diplomat."
After PM Trudeau levelled allegations against the South Asian country, he also reportedly spoke to some of Canada's closest allies like the UK, the US and Australia. These countries have also reacted to the Canadian PM' allegations.
On Tuesday, Britain stated that it was in close touch with its Canadian counterparts regarding the "serious accusations" made by Ottawa, implicating the involvement of the Indian government in the assassination of a Sikh separatist leader in Canada.
"We are in close touch with our Canadian partners about these serious allegations," a UK government spokesperson said.
"It would be inappropriate to comment further during the ongoing investigation by the Canadian authorities," the UK said.
Expressing concern over the allegations, the United States said that it is critical for the perpetrators to be brought to justice.
In a brief statement, White House National Security Council spokesperson Adrienne Watson, said, “We are deeply concerned about the allegations referenced by Prime Minister Trudeau."
“We remain in regular contact with our Canadian partners. It is critical that Canada’s investigation proceed and the perpetrators be brought to justice,” Watson further said.
A representative for Australia's Foreign Minister, Penny Wong, stated that Canberra's apprehensions had been communicated to New Delhi at “senior levels”.
In a statement, the spokesperson said, “Australia is deeply concerned by these allegations and notes ongoing investigations into this matter. Australia believes all countries should respect sovereignty and the rule of law.”
“We are closely engaged with partners on developments. We have conveyed our concerns at senior levels to India," the spokesperson said.
The spokesperson additionally emphasised that these “reports will be particularly concerning to some Australian communities” and stressed the importance of free speech.
“The Indian diaspora are valued and important contributors to our vibrant and resilient multicultural society, where all Australians can peacefully and safely express their views,” the spokesperson added.