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India to rescue 41 Indian sailors stranded in UAE, says foreign minister Sushma Swaraj

Swaraj also said the Indian Embassy in UAE has been directed to ensure that the sailors get essential supplies, adding efforts are on for their release. (Representative image) Photograph: (Getty)

New Delhi, India Jan 09, 2017, 01.13 PM (IST)

India is working towards the release of 41 Indian sailors stranded in merchant ships at Ajman in United Arab Emirates (UAE), foreign minister Sushma Swaraj said on Monday.

Media reports say that 41 Indian sailors are stuck on four merchant ships at the Ajman anchorage in UAE and that two of the vessels are leaking and in danger of sinking soon. The ships have been allegedly stranded by the owner and sailors are struggling for survival.

Swaraj tweeted that the Indian embassy in the UAE has been asked to ensure the delivery of essential supplies to the sailors.

The foreign minister also said that efforts were being made towards the settlement of their dues and the release of the crew.

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The sailors are from the states of Kerala, Maharashtra, Odisha, Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Uttarakhand, Delhi, Punjab, Haryana, Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh, Press Trust of India reported.

Swaraj also responded to reports of 500 Telangana youth being stranded in Iraq on Monday. She clarified that she had received a report from Iraq and the number was much less than 500.

"I have received the report from Iraq. The number is not 500 but much less. We have repatriated 52 stranded Indian workers. We have requests from 4 more. All stranded workers should approach our Consulate in Erbil.

"We request Indian workers not to overstay. The penalty is $6000 in each case. Please approach the Consulate for repatriation," she tweeted.

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(WION with inputs from PTI)

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