No proof that 39 Indians in Iraq are dead: Sushma

Source: The Hitavada      Date: 27 Jul 2017 09:04:04



NO concrete evidence has emerged to conclude that the 39 Indians abducted from Mosul in Iraq three years back have been killed, External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj said on Wednesday and asserted that she “will not commit the sin” of declaring them dead without any proof.

In a forceful statement in the Lok Sabha, Swaraj rejected allegations that she misled the country on the issue and said the Government will continue its efforts to trace them until getting evidence of their death.

“We will continue our efforts to trace them till the time we get evidence that they are dead, as declaring dead them without proof will be a sin and I will not commit that sin,” Swaraj said. “This file will not close till there is proof that the 39 Indians are dead,” she said, adding Vietnam still looks for soldiers who went missing or believed to be killed in the Vietnam war. Even the US still looks for soldiers who went missing in World War II.

Her strong assertion on the issue came two days after Iraqi Foreign Minister Ibrahim al-Jaafari said here that there is no “substantial evidence” on whether the Indians are alive or dead and confirmed that the prison at Badush, their last known location, has been demolished by terror group IS.

However, the Congress appeared to be not satisfied with her statement as its leader Mallikarjun Kharge said, “we will give a notice to discuss foreign affairs and then we will see what you (Swaraj) had said in 2014.”

Kharge stated this after Speaker Sumitra Mahajan disallowed any questions on Swaraj’s statement.