Australian High Commissioner Emphasizes Capability In Managing Sensitive Issues With India

Australia expresses concerns over alleged Indian links to an assassination plot and Sikh separatist killing, emphasizing diplomatic capability in managing sensitive issues with India.


Australian High Commissioner to India Philip Green

Against the backdrop of US allegations of an Indian connection to an alleged assassination plot and Canada's charges related to the killing of a Sikh separatist, Australia expressed its concerns on Wednesday. Australian High Commissioner to India, Philip Green, acknowledged the "anxieties" over these matters but emphasized that New Delhi and Canberra possess the capability to manage "differences" and handle "sensitive" issues.

During an interactive session hosted by the Asia Society Policy Institute, Green, a newly-appointed envoy, highlighted that Australia's engagement with India on these issues is more as a friend than just a "Five-Eyes" partner, referring to the intelligence-sharing alliance comprising Australia, the US, Canada, New Zealand, and the UK.


Green stressed that discussions on these issues take place "sensitively and carefully behind closed doors." He indicated that the relationship between Australia and India is maturing, with both countries learning about each other at a deeper level, navigating differences, and managing sensitive issues, including concerns about alleged activities on US and Canadian territory.

Responding to questions about the friendship standards applied to India compared to the US, Green acknowledged the foundational role of the US in Australia's security but noted that the Australia-India relationship is evolving rapidly, offering numerous opportunities.

When questioned about attacks on Hindu temples in Australia, Green assured that his country takes such incidents seriously, with Australian police and authorities actively addressing these concerns. He emphasized the importance of peaceful protests that abide by the law in Australia.


Regarding economic ties, Green highlighted the ongoing negotiations for the Comprehensive Economic Cooperation Agreement (CECA) since May 2011, aiming to ensure a high-quality agreement that genuinely benefits bilateral relations. Additionally, he mentioned the Australia-India Economic Cooperation and Trade Agreement (ECTA), noting opportunities for collaboration across sectors like horticulture, wine, and dairy.

Green emphasized the potential for collaboration in critical minerals, expressing a desire for Indian batteries to be made with Australian lithium. Overall, he sees significant opportunities for the two countries to expand economic and trade engagement.