Advertisement

HindustanTimes Thu,23 Oct 2014
200 Indians return from Iraq, another 400 to arrive in 48 hours
HT Correspondent
New Delhi, July 06, 2014
First Published: 07:46 IST(6/7/2014)
Last Updated: 11:15 IST(6/7/2014)
Nurses who were stranded in the territory held by Islamic extremists in Iraq, being received by relatives upon arrival at the airport in Kochi. (PTI Photo)

Two hundred Indians landed in Delhi from Najaf in trouble-torn Iraq on a special chartered flight of Iraq Airways early on Sunday.

The flight, chartered by the external affairs ministry (MEA), landed at around 0430 hours in the morning carrying the passengers.

Read: SOS to friends, goodwill won India this battle

Read: Freed Kerala nurses say ISIS militants protected them

In the next 48 hours, another batch of nearly 400 Indians will return to the country from Iraq.

"The return of Indians from Iraq has gathered pace," MEA spokesperson Syed Akbaruddin had said on Saturday, as 46 Indian nurses briefly held hostage by Sunni Arab militants arrived to an emotional welcome in Kochi.

"In the next 48 hours, approximately another 400 Indian nationals would be returning to various destinations in India, including Mumbai, Kolkata, Bangalore, Chennai and Hyderabad, through commercial flights."

Indian nurses who were set free from Iraq are seen arriving at Kochi airport. (Photo credit: Doordarshan News)


Read:
Nurses coming home, but why it will be harder to free Indian workers trapped in Iraq

HT Edit:
Release of nurses in Iraq marks a new phase in Indian diplomacy

The MEA had also said it was estimated that about 1,200 Indians would have returned to the country at the government's cost by Monday.

There were about 10,000 Indians in Iraq before the start of the war between government troops and al Qaeda splinter group the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIS). With the MEA facilitating the rescue operations, an estimated 7,500 Indians in the non-conflict zones have been evacuated.

Fifty Indians, including 39 construction workers held captive in Mosul, are still feared to be trapped in the conflict zones.

Full coverage: Iraq on the brink

Watch: Freed Indian nurses reach Kochi from Iraq, welcomed by Kerala CM

 (With inputs from agencies)


Advertisement
Copyright © 2014 HT Media Limited. All Rights Reserved