Canadian Defence Miniser Harjit Singh Sajjan today said he has no interest in the "internal politics" of any nation, days after Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh termed him a "Khalistani sympathiser".
At a public event here, Sajjan said he has been given "many labels" in his life and that one should be judged by his actions.
"What you are is determined by what you do. You look at my actions. I don't step into the internal politics of any one province or any one nation.
"My goal is to build relationships as representative of the Canadian government and that is what I am here to do and I am also very proud of the fact that I was born here," he said.
Ahead of Sajjan's visit, the Punjab CM had said he would not meet him alleging that the Canadian minister is a "Khalistani sympathiser".
Canada has termed the allegation as "disappointing and inaccurate".
Addressing a seminar on 'Conflict Prevention and Peacekeeping in a Changing World', Sajjan stressed that the military by itself cannot resolve conflicts.
Social factors have to be looked in for effective peacekeeping, he said.
Responding to a query on ISIS, he said grievances within the Sunni population in Iraq and Syria led to the rise of the terror group, and for it to be eliminated the "root causes", including that of recruitment into its ranks, must be addressed.
"We in Canada cannot be an island of stability in an unstable world, while civilians are getting killed," he said.
Sajjan, a Sikh with roots in India, also pitched for bilateral cooperation in the defence sector and the need for a cooperative approach by working with "our allies who share common values in the Asia Pacific".
The event was organised by the Observer Research Foundation based here.
(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)