India summons Britain’s top diplomat for tearing down Indian flag during London mission

NEW DELHI: India summoned Britain’s deputy high commissioner on Sunday evening and demanded an explanation for the ‘total lack of security’ after videos of the dismantling of the indian flag at the Indian Mission of London during a demonstration of pro-Khalistan elements emerged on social networks.
In a strong statement, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (AEM) said that India found the indifference of the UNITED KINGDOM government to the security of Indian diplomatic premises and personnel in the United Kingdom.
British Deputy High Commissioner Christina Scott was summoned to the MEA over the incident while High Commissioner Alex Ellis was out of Delhi, sources said.
“Britain’s most senior diplomat in New Delhi was summoned late in the evening today to convey India’s strong protest against the actions taken by separatist and extremist elements against the Indian High Commission in London earlier in the day,” the MEA said.
“An explanation has been demanded for the complete absence of UK security which allowed these elements to enter the premises of the High Commission,” he said.
The MEA said the diplomat had been reminded of the UK government’s basic obligations under the Vienna Convention.
“India finds the indifference of the UK government to the security of Indian diplomatic premises and personnel in the UK unacceptable,” the MEA said.
He called for immediate action to identify, arrest and prosecute those involved in today’s incident.
“The UK government is expected to take immediate action to identify, arrest and prosecute each of those involved in today’s incident, and put in place strict measures to prevent a repeat of such incidents.” , added the MEA.
In a tweet, High Commissioner Ellis said: “I condemn the shameful acts committed today against the people and premises of @HCI_London – totally unacceptable.”
Images of smashed windows and men scaling the India House building were circulating on social media and videos from the scene showed an Indian official grabbing a protester’s flag through the mission’s first floor window, while that the protester was seen waving a Khalistan flag hanging from its ledge.
Scotland Yard said it was “aware” of an incident in the area but has yet to issue an official statement.

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