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US Closely Monitors Legal Process For The Arrest Of Indian Opposition Leader

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A US State Department spokesman said on Monday that the country is closely monitoring reports of the arrest of Indian opposition leader Arvind Kejriwal, who belong to the Aam Aadmi Party. The spokesman also said that the US supports a transparent legal process.

Germany’s reaction

The statement came after Germany commented on the leader’s arrest. Sebastian Fischer, a spokesman for Germany’s foreign office, responded to questions over the arrest at a press conference held by the government on Friday, he said, “We have taken note, India is a democratic country. We assume and expect that the standards relating to independence of Judiciary and basic democratic principles will also be applied in this case. Like anyone facing accusations, Mr Kejriwal is entitled to a fair and impartial trial, this includes he can make use of all available legal avenues without restrictions. The presumption of innocence is a central element of the rule of law and must apply to him.”

India protested the remarks made by a spokeswoman for the German Foreign Office over the arrest of Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal. “The German Deputy Chief of Mission in New Delhi was summoned today and conveyed India’s strong protest on their Foreign Office Spokesperson’s comments on our internal affairs,” the Ministry of External issues said on Saturday.

The German embassy’s deputy head of mission, Georg Enzweiler, was called to New Delhi, “and conveyed India’s strong protest,” India’s foreign ministry announced on Saturday. “We see such remarks as interfering in our judicial process and undermining the independence of our judiciary,” it said in a statement. “Biased assumptions made on this account are most unwarranted.”

US’ response

The US spokesperson responded to an email regarding the matter, saying, “We encourage a fair, transparent, and timely legal process for Chief Minister Kejriwal.” On Saturday, India summoned a German diplomat in protest over his government’s views regarding the arrest.

One month before the country’s general elections, Kejriwal, a prominent member of the opposition and the chief minister of India’s capital, New Delhi, was taken into custody last Thursday by India’s financial crime-fighting agency, Directorate of Enforcement (ED), on corruption-related charges that his political party denies.

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