New Delhi: “We stand in solidarity with families of Indians killed in Iraq," said Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday after external affairs minister Sushma Swaraj informed the parliament that 39 citizens lost in Iraq since 2014 have been declared dead.
The government is “fully committed" to ensure the safety of Indians abroad. “Every Indian grieves with those who lost their loved ones in Mosul. We stand in solidarity with the bereaved families and pay our respects to the Indians killed in Mosul," said the prime minister in a tweet.
“The MEA and particularly my colleagues @SushmaSwaraj Ji and @Gen_VKSingh Ji left no stone unturned in trying to trace and safely bring back those we lost in Mosul," Modi tweeted, adding that the government remains fully committed towards ensuring the safety of “our sisters and brothers overseas".
In a statement in the Rajya Sabha earlier on Tuesday, Swaraj confirmed the deaths of the 39 missing Indians and said the DNA samples of 38 people had been matched by the Iraqi authorities. In the case of the 39th person, the matching was 70%.
In a press briefing later, Swaraj did not give a direct reply to a volley of questions on when the Indians were killed, saying it was irrelevant as the bodies could have been recovered only after Mosul was liberated from the Islamic State. Mosul city was liberated from the Islamic State in June last year.