India Urges Russia to Cease Recruitment of Indian Nationals Following Recent Deaths in Ukraine Conflict

India has reported that two of its nationals, recruited by the Russian Army, were recently killed in the ongoing Russia-Ukraine conflict, raising the total number of such deaths to four. The Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) expressed strong disapproval of this situation and demanded the immediate release and return of all Indian nationals currently enlisted with the Russian Army.

In a strongly-worded statement, the MEA emphasized that India has called for a “verified stop to any further recruitment of Indian nationals by the Russian Army,” asserting that such activities are not in line with the partnership between the two countries. The ministry conveyed deep condolences to the families of the deceased and announced that the Indian embassy in Moscow is pressing Russian authorities, including the Ministry of Defence, for the swift repatriation of the bodies.

This recent incident follows the deaths of two other Indian nationals earlier this year. In March, 30-year-old Mohammed Asfan from Hyderabad succumbed to injuries while serving with Russian troops on the frontlines. In February, 23-year-old Hemal Ashwinbhai Mangua from Surat, Gujarat, died in a Ukrainian airstrike while serving as a “security helper” in the Donetsk region.

The MEA and the Indian embassy in Moscow have been actively engaging with the Russian Ambassador in New Delhi and Russian officials in Moscow to facilitate the early release and return of all Indian nationals associated with the Russian Army. This development comes shortly after Foreign Secretary Vinay Kwatra attended the Russian National Day reception at the Russian embassy.

Reports indicate that around 200 Indian nationals were recruited as security helpers in the Russian military. To date, ten Indians working as support staff with the Russian military have been released and repatriated to India.

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