Published By: Shankhyaneel Sarkar
Last Updated: September 27, 2023, 11:14 IST
United States, United Nations
Canada’s envoy to the United Nations, Bob Rae, on Tuesday said Canadians are worried about increasing incidents of foreign interference in the country. “We cannot bend the rules of state-to-state relations for political expediency because we’ve seen and continue to see the extent to which democracies are under threat through various means of foreign interference,” Bob Rae said, while addressing the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA).
“But the truth is, if we don’t adhere to the rules that we’ve agreed to, the very fabric of our open and of our free societies may start to tear,” Rae said.
The Canadian government under the Liberal Party-NDP coalition has flagged instances of ‘foreign interference’ in Canada’s internal affairs. However, Canadian news agencies said that the Canadian government has received intel from Canadian spy agency, the Canadian Security Intelligence Service (CSIS), on China’s efforts to meddle in Canada’s political, economical and electoral affairs but the Trudeau government has dragged its feet in addressing the concerns.
A report by Foreign Policy said the Trudeau government had never publicly accused China when its spy agencies reported that China, for several years, has been meddling in Canada’s affairs. It also said that the Canadian spy agency members felt as if they were being held back.
The comments also come amid Trudeau’s allegations that India played a role in the murder of Khalistani separatist-terrorist Hardeep Singh Nijjar who was shot dead by unknown miscreants in British Columbia’s Surrey, outside a gurdwara’s parking lot in June.
The external affairs minister S Jaishankar weighed in on the issue and said if Canada finds something “specific” it should let India know. “One, we told the Canadians that this is not the government of India’s policy. Two, we told the Canadians saying that look, if you have something specific, if you have something relevant, let us know. We are open to looking at it,” Jaishankar said during a discussion at the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR) in New York.
“Canada actually has seen a lot of organised crime relating to the secessionist forces, organised crime, violence, extremism. They’re all very, very deeply mixed up,” the foreign minister further added.
The foreign minister also pointed out that Canada has been warned regarding the “organised crime leadership, which operates out of Canada”.
“We have actually been badgering the Canadians, we have given them a lot of information about organised crime leadership, which operates out of Canada. There are a large number of extradition requests. There are terrorist leaders who have been identified,” Jaishankar said.