India urges UK to deport or prosecute Khalistani extremists threatening Indian diplomats

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India on Friday urged the UK Government to take strong public action against Khalistani extremists threatening officers of the Indian High Commission, such as deportation or legal prosecution.

This was conveyed by National Security Advisor Ajit Doval to his UK counterpart Tim Barrow during a meeting here today.

The UK NSA is on an official visit to New Delhi on July 7, at the invitation of NSA Ajit Doval for the India-UK Strategic Dialogue. He is accompanied by a delegation of senior UK government officials.

The two NSAS have engaged regularly in extensive discussions on a broad bilateral, regional and global agenda. The current visit will give them the opportunity to continue their high-level dialogue, which will include a review of the multi-faceted cooperation between the two countries as well as explore futuristic areas for technology collaboration, sources said.

The two National Security Advisers met for restricted discussions on regional and global issues of mutual interest. This was followed by the delegation level talks where both the countries reaffirmed their close strategic partnership and agreed to accord maximum priority to further enhance the security linkages.

The two sides agreed to enhance cooperation to address violent extremism and radicalism. There can be no justification for violent extremism and radicalization in a democracy.

The Indian side raised the issue of the extremist elements in UK threatening individual officers of the Indian High Commission and urged the UK Government to take strong public action against these elements such as deportation or legal prosecution.

Both the sides agreed to work closely on counter terrorism, counter terror financing, use of the internet for terrorism purposes, illicit drug trafficking and counter radicalisation.

The two sides agreed to deepen mutually beneficial collaboration in critical and emerging technologies.

During the visit, NSA Tim Barrow will also meet other dignitaries of the Government of India, the sources added.

The meeting between the two NSAs comes as UK Foreign Secretary James Cleverly took to Twitter on Thursday to state that any direct attacks on the Indian High Commission in London are “completely unacceptable” and that the safety of the staff is paramount.

His statement comes amid threats and attacks targeted at Indian diplomatic missions in the US, Australia and Canada and threatening posters emerging online with images of Indian High Commissioner to the UK Vikram Doraiswami and Dr Shashank Vikram, the Consul General of India in Birmingham.

Earlier in April, during the Fifth India-UK Home Affairs Dialogue (HAD) held in Delhi, India had conveyed its concerns on the misuse of the UK’s asylum status by the pro-Khalistani elements to aid and abet terrorist activities in India. India also requested for increased monitoring of the UK based pro-Khalistan extremists and to take appropriate proactive action.

In May, India had summoned the senior most diplomat at the British High Commission in Delhi after some Khalistani supporters had brought down the Indian flag at the Indian High Commission in London. An explanation was also demanded for the complete absence of security that allowed Khalistani elements to enter the high commission premises.

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