Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau highlighted the importance of coordinated G20 leadership and action to uphold the rule of law and international law and strengthen democratic systems, as he participated in a virtual G20 Leaders' Summit hosted by India.
Trudeau's participation in the summit comes amidst strains in ties between Canada and India following his allegations in September of the 'potential' involvement of Indian agents in the killing of Khalistani separatist Hardeep Singh Nijjar on June 18 in British Columbia.
India had designated Nijjar as a terrorist in 2020. India has rejected Trudeau's allegations as 'absurd' and 'motivated'.
Prime Minister Trudeau participated in a virtual G20 Leaders' Summit hosted by India, following the in-person G20 Leaders' Summit in New Delhi last September. This virtual summit was an opportunity for G20 leaders to further the goals agreed to in September, as outlined in the G20 New Delhi Leaders' Declaration, Trudeau's office said in a readout on Wednesday.
During the meeting, Prime Minister Trudeau 'highlighted the importance of coordinated G20 leadership and action to uphold the rule of law and international law, strengthen democratic systems, and advance global priorities including financial institution reform, gender equality, and digital technology', it said.
As part of building a strong, healthy future for people around the world, he further noted the importance of supporting and reforming multilateral development banks (MDBs) to improve the ability of low and low-middle-income countries to access the financing they need to confront overlapping crises, it said.
Trudeau condemned Russia's 'brutal and unjustifiable invasion' of Ukraine, called for Russia to be held to account, and stressed that the most vulnerable worldwide are affected most by the war's global impacts.
He re-emphasised the importance of abiding by the rule of law and encouraged Member States to denounce the irresponsible actions of Russia.
He reiterated his condemnation of the terrorist organisation Hamas and its brutal attacks against Israel. He recognised as progress the agreement on the release of hostages and the extended humanitarian pause in Gaza, noting it was what Canada and other nations had called for in recent weeks.
He also reiterated his call for the immediate release of all hostages, the readout said.
'The prime minister and other G20 leaders exchanged views on the dire humanitarian situation in Gaza. Prime Minister Trudeau stressed the need to protect civilians in Gaza and ensure unimpeded access to life-saving humanitarian aid. The prime minister condemned the disturbing rise in Islamophobia, antisemitism, and anti-Arab discrimination,' it said.
Prime Minister Trudeau reaffirmed the importance of the G20 as a forum for international collaboration and a space to engage constructively when issues arise, it added.