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177: Vienna Convention | India-Canada
3 minutes read | Imp for UPSC Mains GS2 IR
India made Canada downsize its diplomatic presence in New Delhi
Reason? Vienna Convention
In simpler words, India has 20 diplomats in Ottawa
Canada had 61!
What is actually happening & what all do you need to know for #UPSC here?
Go back to 1950s
Here, the chaos around security of diplomats was at an all time high
1961: World comes together in Vienna
To set common principles to treat each other's diplomatic representatives
What are these principles that are followed by 193 countries?
a) Diplomatic Immunity
Exemption from certain laws and taxes given to diplomats
Purpose: To allow diplomats to function without threat, fear or intimidation in the host country
• Receiving state shall treat them with due respect
• This makes a diplomat immune to arrest or detention
• Take due steps to prevent any attack on their freedom & dignity
• Further, the premises such as embassies and consulates can not be entered or searched by host country without permissions from the sending state
b) Freedom of Communication
The diplomats have right to communicate freely with their government
Their bags, documents, and communications are protected by the host country
c) Non interference in internal matters
In return, the diplomats are expected not to interfere in the internal affairs of the host country
This principle promotes peaceful coexistence & respectful relations between states
(Canadian diplomats are said to have violated this principle)
d) Protection of Diplomatic Missions
It is on host country to ensure safety of missions & diplomats
If you remember, UK govt. failed at this recently
e) Termination of diplomatic relations
The Vienna Convention keeps space open for termination
In case of poor relations between the countries, such as the times of India and Canada;
the countries can felicitate orderly withdrawal of diplomatic personnel and even closure of the mission
So, what's the exact issue with Canada?
As per Vienna Convention, the reciprocity is another principle
Here, the host countries have a right👇🏻
This right is to ask for equal diplomatic presence i.e.
if India has 20 diplomats in Ottawa and Canada has 61 in New Delhi;
India is in all its rights to seek a 20-20!😉
Often, countries do not exercise this owing to good relations
However, the same can be invoked in case of deteriorating relationship
Information like the one I shared in this post is rarely found in conventional books for UPSC.
How to prepare them?