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Canada's Prime Minister Justin Trudeau speaks during a news conference at Rideau Cottage, as efforts continue to help slow the spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada January 5, 2021. REUTERS/Blair Gable


Trudeau Applauds ‘Rule of Law’ Following Arrests in Sikh Separatist Murder Case

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau addressed concerns within Canada’s Sikh community following the recent arrests made in connection with the killing of Sikh separatist Hardeep Singh Nijjar in Vancouver last year. Trudeau emphasized the importance of upholding the rule of law and urged trust in the justice system during a gala celebrating Sikh heritage in Toronto.

The arrests, which occurred on Friday, involved three men charged with first-degree murder and conspiracy in relation to Nijjar’s death. The suspects, all Indian nationals, are accused of various roles in the murder.

Trudeau stressed that Canada is a country governed by the rule of law with a robust and independent justice system, committed to safeguarding all its citizens. He acknowledged the apprehension within the Sikh community but urged calm and confidence in the ongoing investigation.

Nijjar, who immigrated to Canada in 1997 and became a citizen in 2015, was an advocate for Khalistan, a separate Sikh state. He was shot dead by masked assailants outside the Sikh temple he led in suburban Vancouver on June 18, 2023.

Trudeau’s remarks come after Canada’s expulsion of an Indian official due to what he described as “credible allegations” linking Indian intelligence to Nijjar’s killing, leading to diplomatic tensions between Ottawa and New Delhi. India denied the allegations and retaliated by imposing visa restrictions on Canadians and recalling its diplomats.

In a related incident, the US Justice Department charged an Indian citizen residing in the Czech Republic with plotting a similar assassination attempt on American soil, further underscoring international ramifications.

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