HomeInternational GeopoliticsIndia Strongly Objects to US Remarks on Kejriwal’s Requests

India Strongly Objects to US Remarks on Kejriwal’s Requests

Source : The Wire

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Acting Deputy Chief of US Mission, Gloria Berbena

New Delhi: After Germany, India summoned a senior US diplomat to the Ministry of External Affairs to lodge a “strong objection” over State Department’s remarks calling for “fair, transparent, and timely legal process” following the arrest of Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal.

The acting deputy chief of mission Gloria Berbena was called to the MEA on Wednesday, more than 24 hours after the US remarks.

Earlier on Tuesday, news agency Reuters had published e-mailed answers from the US state department spokesperson on the arrest of Kejriwal. “We encourage a fair, transparent, and timely legal process for Chief Minister Kejriwal,” he urged.

Last week, Germany had been the first country to express hope that “standards regarding the independence of the judiciary and basic democratic principles” would be applicable to Kejriwal’s arrest. A day later, the German deputy chief of mission was called to the MEA.

In both cases, it was not the highest-ranking diplomat of Germany and the US in India who was summoned, but rather the next in line.

However, the MEA press release regarding the US did not acknowledge summoning a diplomat, unlike the statement regarding the protest against Germany.

“We take strong objection to the remarks of the Spokesperson of the US State Department about certain legal proceedings in India,” said the MEA press note on Wednesday.

It further accused the US of interfering in India’s internal affairs. “In diplomacy, states are expected to be respectful of the sovereignty and internal affairs of others. This responsibility is even more so in case of fellow democracies. It could otherwise end up setting unhealthy precedents”.

Asserting that India has an “independent judiciary” that is committed to “objective and timely outcomes”, the MEA stated, “Casting aspersions on that is unwarranted.”

Kejriwal, who is also the leader of the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP), was arrested shortly before the upcoming parliamentary elections next month. Meanwhile, Delhi’s deputy chief minister, Manish Sisodia, has been in custody since February last year in connection with the same case.

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