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Security boosted at Vancouver’s Indian consulate after Trudeau’s remarks

Vancouver police say they aren’t aware of any specific threats to Indian consular officials

The Vancouver Police Department says it’s beefing up security outside India’s Consulate after Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said this week there was credible intelligence about a potential link between India’s government and the killing of a Sikh community leader in B.C.

Const. Tania Visintin, the department’s media relations officer, says police are “closely monitoring the situation” since Trudeau’s announcement about the killing of Hardeep Singh Nijjar, a vocal supporter of an independent Sikh homeland, who was shot dead in Surrey in June.

She says Vancouver police aren’t aware of any specific threats to Indian consular officials, but have increased police presence at the downtown Vancouver consulate.

Visintin says police are also working with city officials to implement a no-stopping zone on Howe Street outside the building that houses the consulate.

Two Vancouver police officers stationed outside the building in a police cruiser Wednesday morning said they weren’t authorized to speak to media.

No one from the consulate was made available to comment on the police presence.

A sign on the door tells visitors to check in with security before visiting the consulate, with a private security guard stationed in the building’s lobby screening entrants.

Foreign Affairs Minister Melanie Joly said last week that Canada had offered round-the-clock security to India’s diplomats.

A statement released by the Indian government Wednesday warns Indian nationals of “growing anti-India activities” in Canada, telling potential travellers to “exercise utmost caution.”

The statement says Indian diplomats and others in the community have received threats for their opposition to what it calls “the anti-India agenda.”

Signs blaming Indian diplomats for Nijjar’s killing have been posted around B.C.’s Lower Mainland and elsewhere for months.

Joly said in July that such a poster advertising a protest in Toronto was “unacceptable.”

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