During a recent meeting between India’s External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar and US Secretary of State Antony Blinken in Washington, a wide range of topics were discussed, according to the US State Department. However, notably absent from the conversation was any mention of the ongoing dispute between India and Canada regarding the killing of Khalistani terrorist Hardeep Singh Nijjar.
Hardeep Singh Nijjar, designated as a terrorist by India in 2020, was fatally shot outside a gurudwara in Surrey, British Columbia, on June 18. Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has repeatedly raised allegations that Indian government agents were involved in the killing but has provided no evidence to support these claims.
India has firmly rejected Canada’s allegations, describing them as “absurd” and “motivated.” External Affairs Minister Jaishankar assured Canada that India remains open to examining any specific and relevant information provided.
Despite the ongoing dispute between India and Canada, the US State Department’s official statement on the Jaishankar-Blinken meeting did not address this issue. Instead, the statement highlighted discussions on key outcomes of India’s G20 presidency and the creation of the India-Middle East-Europe Economic Corridor.
“The Secretary and the External Affairs Minister also emphasized the continued importance of cooperation ahead of the upcoming 2+2 Dialogue, particularly in the areas of defense, space, and clean energy,” noted State Department Spokesperson Matthew Miller.
During the meeting, Minister Jaishankar announced that New Delhi would host the fifth edition of the India-US 2+2 Ministerial Dialogue, although specific dates were not disclosed. This dialogue is expected to take place in the first half of November.
While both ministers had productive discussions on various topics, including global developments, they did not address questions from reporters about the Canada row. Instead, Secretary Blinken expressed his pleasure in welcoming Minister Jaishankar to the State Department and looked forward to further discussions during the meeting.
Minister Jaishankar is on a five-day official trip to Washington and shared his optimism about the upcoming 2+2 meeting between India and the US, which was laid out during his visit.