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UK Foreign Secretary says attack on Indian High Commission ‘unacceptable’

UK Foreign Secretary James Cleverly responded to the attack on Indian High Commission and called the attack by the Khalistani elements “unacceptable” in a statement on Thursday.

Cleverly said in a statement that the acts of violence towards staff at the Indian High Commission in London are unacceptable. He said that the police investigation is ongoing and UK Government is in close contact with the Indian High Commission in London and the Indian government in New Delhi.

“We are working with the Metropolitan Police to review security at the Indian High Commission, and will make the changes needed to ensure the safety of its staff as we did for today’s (Wednesday) demonstration,” the statement said further.

Suspected pro-Khalistan supporters on Wednesday held a fresh demonstration outside the Indian High Commission in the UK. However, unlike the earlier demonstration during which the tricolour was taken down and an attempt made to raise the Khalistan flag, the protest this time was confined behind police barricades.

The statement released by the UK Foriegn Secretary further said, “We will always take the security of the High Commission, and all foreign missions in the UK, extremely seriously, and prevent and robustly respond to incidents such as this.”

Highlighting the UK-India relationship, he further said that both nations’ relations are driven by “deep personal connections” and are thriving.

“Our joint 2030 Roadmap guides our relationship and shows what we can achieve when we work together, creating new markets and jobs for the two countries and helping to tackle shared challenges. We want to build deeper ties between the UK and India for the future,” the statement said further.

Since the weekend, several uniformed officers had been patrolling the area in Aldwych and Metropolitan Police vans were stationed at India Place.

Earlier on Wednesday, barricades from outside British High Commission in New Delhi were removed.

The seniormost UK diplomat in New Delhi was summoned on Sunday night after the Indian High Commission was vandalised, the Ministry of External Affairs said in an official release earlier.

An explanation was demanded about the complete absence of British security that allowed suspected pro-Khalistan elements to enter the High Commission premises. The diplomat was reminded in this regard of the basic obligations of the UK Government under the Vienna Convention.

“India finds unacceptable the indifference of the UK Government to the security of Indian diplomatic premises and personnel in the UK,” the MEA release said.

British High Commissioner Alex Ellis condemned the “disgraceful acts” outside the Indian High Commission, calling it totally unacceptable.

“I condemn the disgraceful acts today against the people and premises of the High Commission of India – totally unacceptable,” British High Commissioner to India Alex Ellis tweeted earlier.

The desecration of the national flag last Sunday led to an unprecedented outpouring of support from the diverse Indian community settled in Britain.