Interviews with three witnesses to the killing and descriptions of the security footage showing the moments leading up to the shooting provide details about the gunmen whom Prime Minister Justin Trudeau of Canada has branded as “agents” of the Indian government.
The gunmen were dressed in black, with hoods over their heads and black medical masks covering their faces, and one of them dropped a blue medical glove that was later recovered by the police, according to the witnesses. They fired anywhere from 30 to 50 shots at their victim, the witnesses said.
Supporting Canada’s charge that India was involved is intelligence, including the intercepted communications of Indian diplomats in Canada indicating their involvement in the plot, according to Western allied officials. India has denied the charges.
Now, the brazen killing threatens to upend not only Canada’s relationship with India, but President Biden’s efforts to court India as a counterweight to Russia and China.
The Canadian government has said that the killing was orchestrated by the Indian government, which had labeled Mr. Nijjar, a Canadian citizen and a prominent advocate for Sikh separatism in India, a terrorist in 2020 and called for his arrest.
The CBC, which is owned by the federal government, reported that “when pressed behind closed doors, no Indian official has denied the bombshell allegation at the core of this case — that there is evidence to suggest Indian government involvement in the assassination of a Canadian citizen on Canadian soil.” [Continue reading…]