Indian Nurses in ISIS captivity Moved from Tikrit
It has been reported that about 46 Indian nurses are stranded in the militant controlled city of Tikrit, the hometown of the former Iraqi president Saddam Hussein in Iraq. They have been moved “against their will” to another location and are presently in ISIS captivity. According to foreign ministry spokesperson Syed Akbaruddin, their present destination is unknown thought “they are on the move right now. They agreed to shift for their own safety.” Adding that, “it is not a situation of our choice. It is a difficult situation.”
It seems that there are “no free will zones of conflict,” according to Mr. Akbaruddin when asked if the nurses were in captivity. The nurses had been living in a hospital since the conflict had occurred last month. The nurses had been pressured by the militants to board the buses and leave the hospital. Mr. Akbaruddin gave assurance that the Indian government is staying constant touch with the nurses. In an explosion which had occurred near the hospital in Tikrit, some of the nurses had been lightly injured by broken glass.
With relatives in India demanding quick action, the first serious foreign policy challenge for the new government of Prime Minister Narendra Modi is to evacuate the Indians from Iraq. There are some 900 Indians who are ready to return and are being flown out of Iraq. Mr. Akbaruddin stated that “India is not alone in working on this,” as they have partners inside and outside of Iraq.