Stranded Indian nationals in Kyrgyzstan safely evacuated

     Ministry of External Affairs on Tuesday said that the Embassy of India in Bishek managed to evacuate all Indian nationals, stranded in the towns of Osh and Jalal-Abad, to Bishkek late last night. "A number of Indian nationals, primarily students, were stranded in the towns of Osh and Jalal-Abad in Southern Kyrgyzstan due to civil disturbances. Despite the heavy odds, the Embassy of India in Bishkek, in close coordination with the Kyrgyz authorities, managed to safely evacuate all the Indian nationals to Bishkek late last night," said Ministry of External Affairs spokesman Vishnu Prakash. "Hostel accommodation and meals as possible under the circumstances, have been arranged for the students at Bishkek, by the Embassy. Some of the students have lost their passports. Our Mission will issue new passports and other travel documents as required in such cases," he added. It was informed while some of the students want to stay on at Bishkek, some others would like to return to India. "Our Mission is making efforts to ensure that the students travel to India over the next few days by commercial or chartered flights, which are operating normally in and out of Bishkek," the MEA spokesman further stated. "All the Indian nationals stranded in the southern Kyrgyz towns of Osh and Jalal-Abad were safely evacuated last night by air to Bishkek. They are expected to return to India over the next few days. Flights out of Bishkek are operating normally," a Ministry of External Affairs release said. Fierce clashes between the Kyrgyz majority and the Uzbek minority erupted on Thursday night, turning much of the Central Asian nation into a warzone. Over hundred people have been killed over the past four days in what is being described as the worst ethnic violence in Kyrgyzstan in the last two decades. The interim government in Kyrgyzstan, which took power in April after a popular revolt toppled President Kurmanbek Bakiyev, had appealed for Russian help to quell the riots. Bakiyev, who currently exiled in Belarus, said Kyrgyzstan was on the verge of collapse. Media reports added that violence continued unabated with Kyrgyzs rioters torching Uzbek villages and slaughtering residents. More than 75,000 Uzbeks are said to have crossed over to Uzbekistan.

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