India suspends the issuance of visas to Canadian citizens due to controversy over the death of a Sikh leader | International

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The Indian authorities reported this Thursday that they have proceeded to suspend the issuance of visas to Canadian citizens in the midst of increasing tension between the two countries due to the controversy surrounding the death of the Sikh leader Hardeep Singh Nijjar, who had citizenship. Canadian and was murdered in June in British Columbia (Canada). “Due to operational reasons, Indian visa services have been suspended until further notice,” the company in charge of issuing Indian visa applications said in a brief statement.

For their part, Canadian authorities have announced that they will reduce the number of diplomats currently in India due to “security issues” after Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau suggested that Indian authorities were behind the murder. of the independence leader.

“In view of the current development of relations and the increase in tension, the decision has been made to guarantee the safety of our diplomats,” said the spokesperson for the Canadian Foreign Ministry, Jean-Pierre Godbout, according to the newspaper. National Post. “Exercising caution, we have decided to temporarily adjust the presence of our diplomatic staff in India,” she said before explaining that diplomats have been receiving threats through social networks.

On Monday, Trudeau said that Canada's intelligence services had "credible" information of alleged involvement of Indian authorities in Nijjar's murder, something that has sparked criticism from New Delhi. Nijjar was shot in front of a Sikh temple in Surrey, in the Canadian province of British Columbia, on June 18. He was also the leader of the Khalistan Tiger Force, an independence group that aspires to secession from the historic Sikh Empire in Khalistan and that had prepared attacks in the Indian province of Punjab.

The Indian Government, for its part, has “strongly” rejected the accusations and has underlined its “concern” at the fact that the country's senior officials have openly expressed “sympathy” for such theories.

“Such baseless allegations are intended to divert attention from Khalistani terrorists and extremists, who have been sheltered in Canada and who continue to threaten the sovereignty and territorial integrity of India. The inaction of the Canadian Government has been a cause for concern for a long time,” the Indian authorities have asserted.

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