Canada has postponed a trade mission to India planned for October amid strained diplomatic relations between the two countries, reported Reuters.

A team comprising Canadian Trade Minister Mary Ng and the country’s business leaders was scheduled to visit Mumbai on October 9 for a five-day trip named “Team Canada” trade mission.

“At this time, we are postponing the upcoming trade mission to India,” said Shanti Cosentino, a spokesperson for Canada’s trade minister. Cosentino did not cite a reason for the decision, according to Reuters.

The announcement came hours after a senior Indian government official confirmed to The Indian Express that talks between India and Canada on a Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement have been paused.

“There were certain political developments in Canada on which India has also raised its objection,” said the official. “For the time being (till) these political developments are settled, we have paused the negotiations with Canada. But the moment these political issues are sorted out, the talks will resume. It is only a pause. There is no break, there is only pause.”

Tensions between the two countries escalated when India issued a strongly-worded statement following a meeting between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his Canadian counterpart Justin Trudeau on the sidelines of the G20 Summit.

The release quoted Modi as having conveyed New Delhi’s strong concerns to Trudeau about “continuing anti-India activities of extremist elements” in Canada.

“They are promoting secessionism and inciting violence against Indian diplomats, damaging diplomatic premises, and threatening the Indian community in Canada and their places of worship,” the ministry said.

It stated that mutual respect and trust were “essential for the progress of India-Canada relationship”.

In response, a press note by Trudeau’s office said that the Canadian prime minister had raised the importance of “respecting the rule of law, democratic principles and national sovereignty” during his meeting with Modi.

At a press conference, Trudeau said, “Canada will always defend freedom of expression, freedom of conscience and freedom of peaceful protest, and it’s extremely important to us.”

Canada had, on September 1, also paused the Early Progress Trade Agreement, three months after the two nations said they aimed to seal an initial agreement this year, according to Reuters. The agreement was meant to reduce or eliminate customs duties on the maximum number of goods traded between the two countries.