Jaishankar discusses issue of Indian diplomats’ security in UK with British counterpart

Jaishankar said during the discussion, he "brought up concerns pertaining to the security of our diplomats" in the UK.

Jakarta: External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar on Thursday brought up concerns pertaining to the security of Indian diplomats in the UK with his British counterpart James Cleverly amidst extremist elements threatening officers of India’s missions in the country.

Jaishankar raised the issue with Cleverly days after National Security Advisor Ajit Doval called upon his British counterpart Tim Barrow to take strong public action such as deportation against extremist elements threatening officers of the Indian High Commission in the UK.

Taking to Twitter, Jaishankar, who is here in the Indonesian capital to attend a meeting of the ASEAN-India Foreign Ministers, said he had “a broad-ranging discussion” with UK Foreign Secretary Cleverly.

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The minister said they spoke about the agenda of the ASEAN Regional Forum, including regional and global issues, and jointly assessed the progress of the India-UK bilateral exchanges.

Jaishankar said during the discussion, he “brought up concerns pertaining to the security of our diplomats” in the UK.

Recently, pro-Khalistan groups have issued posters inciting violence against senior Indian diplomats in the UK as well as in the US, Canada and Australia, triggering concerns in New Delhi.

India has already asked all these countries to ensure the safety and security of Indian diplomats and its missions.

Cleverly on Thursday last week said that any direct attacks on the High Commission of India in London are “completely unacceptable”.

Jaishankar’s intervention follows threats and attacks targeted at Indian diplomatic missions in the US, Australia and Canada and some 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.

In March, the tricolour flying atop the Indian High Commission in London was grabbed at by the protesters chanting pro-Khalistan slogans. Following the incident on March 19, India registered a strong protest with the British government over the safety of its diplomatic mission and questioned the lack of sufficient security at the premises.

Arindam Bagchi, the spokesperson in the Ministry of External Affairs has said that the safety of the Indian diplomats and security of the Indian missions is of utmost priority to the government and New Delhi has taken it up with concerned countries.

In the name of freedom of expression, space should not be given to those advocating violence or legitimising terrorism, Bagchi said in a message to the countries that are witnessing increasing activities by the Khalistani groups.

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