India has sought Turkey’s help in securing the release of 39 Indian nationals who were kidnapped by Islamic State militants from the war-torn Iraqi town of Mosul last year, local media reported Friday.
According to a report in the Indian daily Times of India, the Indian Foreign Minister Sushma Swaraj had approached her visiting Turkish counterpart Mevlut Cavusoglu over the issue.
Indian Foreign Ministry spokesperson Syed Akbaruddin said the two leaders discussed the ISIS threat as well as about the missing 39 Indians.
“India -Turkey Ministers meet to confer on bilateral regional issues including developments in West Asia,” tweeted Akbaruddin.
The Indians were working as construction workers in Mosul when the town fell to the Islamic State (IS) group. Initially, 40 workers were kidnapped, but one later managed to flee from the clutches of the terrorists.
About 10,000 Indians work and live in Iraq.
Armed rebels from the Islamic State (IS) group launched their offensive on June 9 last year and swiftly took control of large chunks of five provinces, sparking a crisis that has alarmed world leaders.