• Saturday, July 20, 2024

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Russia agrees to release Indians working with its military

Putin and Modi visit the Atom pavilion at the Exhibition of Achievements of National Economy (VDNKh) in Moscow. (Photo: Reuters)

By: Vivek Mishra

Russia has broadly heeded India’s call to end the recruitment of Indians as support staff to the Russian military and ensure the repatriation of those still working in the force, top sources told PTI on Tuesday (9).

It is learnt that Moscow agreed to release the Indians after the issue came up during an informal meeting between prime minister Narendra Modi and Russian president Vladimir Putin on Monday (8) night.

Last month, India’s ministry of external affairs (MEA) said the issue of Indian nationals serving with the Russian Army remains a matter of “utmost concern” and demanded action from Moscow.

On June 11, India said two Indian nationals, who were recruited by the Russian army, had been killed in the ongoing Russia-Ukraine conflict, which took the number of such deaths to four.

Following the deaths of the two Indians, the MEA demanded a “verified stop” to further recruitment of Indian nationals by the Russian Army.

In a statement, it said India demanded that there be a “verified stop to any further recruitment of Indian nationals by the Russian Army” and that such activities would not be in “consonance with our partnership.”

Earlier in March, 30-year-old Hyderabad resident Mohammed Asfan succumbed to injuries sustained while serving with the Russian troops on the frontlines with Ukraine.

In February, Hemal Ashwinbhai Mangua, a 23-year-old resident of Surat, died in a Ukrainian air strike while serving as a “security helper” in the Donetsk region.

The Russian president hosted a private dinner for the Indian prime minister at the former’s residence in Novo-Ogaryovo on the outskirts of Moscow late on Monday evening.

(PTI)

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