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HindustanTimes Sat,02 Aug 2014

Envoy retracts remark on ‘Indian jihadis’

HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times  New Delhi, September 11, 2013
First Published: 01:43 IST(11/9/2013) | Last Updated: 01:45 IST(11/9/2013)

India summoned Syrian ambassador Riad Abbas for his remarks on the presence of “Indian jihadis” fighting the Syrian war. However, the Syrian envoy categorically stated that “he had not made any remarks on the presence of Indian jihadis” and had spoken about jihadis in general, who were coming in from Turkey.

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He also informed that the mother of a UK citizen of Indian origin had called him up pleading for his release.

But the envoy said he had heard of them only through Twitter and Facebook and couldn’t provide any assistance due to lack of information.

 According to sources, the reference the envoy made could be the case of Dr Shah Abbas Khan, a British doctor of Indian origin who entered Syria illegally and was detailed.

Sandeep Kumar, joint secretary (West Asia and North Africa) had called in the envoy.

Regarding comments on not sharing evidence with the Indian side as no Indian official had been to Syria for the last two years, Abbas stated that the evidence was with reference to use of chemical weapons by the rebels, and not relating to presence of Indian jihadis in Syria, sources said.

Abbas also stated strongly that he was always deeply appreciative of India’s position on Syria.


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