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UNSC: India voices deep concern that safe corridor for Indians in Sumy did not materialise
Ukraine-Russia
UNI

UNSC: India voices deep concern that safe corridor for Indians in Sumy did not materialise

| @indiablooms | 08 Mar 2022, 09:45 am

United Nations/New Delhi: India at the UN Security Council voiced deep concern that despite its repeated urgings to both Russia and Ukraine, the safe corridor for Indian students stranded in Sumy did not materialise.

India's Permanent Representative to the UN TS Tirumurti, in his address at the UNSC briefing on the humanitarian situation in Ukraine on Monday, said India has been consistent in calling for an immediate end to all hostilities.

He said that PM Modi “once again spoke to the leadership of both sides today and reiterated our call for immediate ceasefire and the need for both parties to return to the path of dialogue and diplomacy.”

PM Modi had spoken to Russian President Vladimir Putin and with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy.

“We have also reiterated our urgent demand for safe and uninterrupted passage for all innocent civilians, including Indian nationals remaining in Ukraine. We are deeply concerned that despite our repeated urgings to both sides, the safe corridor for our students stranded in Sumy did not materialise,” he said.

Over 500 Indian students are stranded in Sumy, and despite Russia announcing a temporary ceasefire and a humanitarian corridor in Sumy, the evacuation of the students could not take place. Tirumurti said that India has managed to facilitate the safe return of over 20,000 Indians from Ukraine. “We have also assisted nationals from other countries, who approached us, in their return to their respective countries.”

“And we will remain open to doing so in the coming days,” he said.

He expressed thanks for the assistance rendered by the authorities of Ukraine and its neighbouring countries in facilitating the return of the Indian nationals.

He said India has has already sent seven tranches of humanitarian supplies to Ukraine and its neighbouring countries.

These include medicines, medical equipment, tents, tarpaulin, protective eye gear, water storage tanks, solar lamps, sleeping mats and blankets amongst other relief material.

"We are in the process of identifying other such requirements and sending more supplies," he added.

He also stressed, “It is important that humanitarian action is always guided by the principles of humanitarian assistance, i.e, humanity, neutrality, impartiality and independence. These should not be politicised.”

Earlier in his address, he said the worsening situation in Ukraine and the ensuing humanitarian crisis deserves our immediate and urgent attention.

"As per the UN's own estimate, 1.5 million refugees have sought shelter in neighbouring countries of Ukraine over the last eleven days. This has led to a pressing humanitarian crisis that needs to be addressed expeditiously," he said.

He said that numerous civilians have lost their lives in the Ukraine crisis, including Indian medical student Naveen Gyanagoudar.

"India mourns his death and we convey our deepest condolences to his family, just as we mourn the loss of each and every civilian life in the conflict," he said.

Naveen was shot dead in Kharkiv on March 1 while standing in a queue to buy groceries.

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