Canada withdraws 41 diplomats from India « Khabarhub
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Canada withdraws 41 diplomats from India


20 October 2023  

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OTTAWA: Forty-one Canadian diplomats have recently left India amid a rift over the murder of a Sikh separatist leader on Canadian soil, BBC reported.

India asked Canada two weeks ago to withdraw dozens of its diplomatic staff and threatened to remove their immunity if they remained, it said.

Canadian officials called the threat a “violation of international law”.

Relations have been tense after Canada accused India of being behind the 18 June killing of Hardeep Singh Nijjar, according to BBC.

India has denied the allegations, calling them “absurd”.

On Thursday, Canada’s foreign minister, Melanie Joly, confirmed that many Canadian diplomats and their dependents in India have now left the country.

She said India had said that immunity for “all but 21 diplomats” will be “unilaterally removed” by 20 October.

The BBC has reached out to the High Commission of India in Canada for comment.

Ms Joly said that the remaining 21 diplomats are still in India, but the withdrawal means Canada will have to limit its services in the country due to a shortage of staff.

Specifically, the move will put a pause on in-person operations in Bangalore, Mumbai, and Chandigarh, Ms Joly said. Officials said there is no timeline on when those services will resume.

Services will still be available out of the High Commission of Canada in Delhi, and applications centres – which are third-party run – will also remain open, officials said.

However, the reduction of staff is anticipated to significantly slow down processing times for immigration applications, at least in the short term, said Canadian immigration minister Marc Miller.

It will be primarily Indian citizens who will be affected, officials said, including international students looking to study in Canada.

Indian nationals made up the largest percentage of applicants for temporary and permanent residency in Canada in 2022.

India says Canada had many more diplomats in Delhi than India has in Ottawa, and has demanded parity ever since the row between the two countries erupted,

(BBC)

Publish Date : 20 October 2023 13:34 PM

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