India seeks release of detained sailors in Iran


New Delhi: The Indian government here on Friday urged Iran for the release of nine Indian sailors detained in that country for two years.
External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj made the request during a meeting with her visiting Iranian counterpart Javed Zarid.

“I had a good meeting with Foreign Minister of Iran HE @JZarif today. I raised the issue of nine Indian sailors detained in Iran,” Sushma Swaraj tweeted.

Sushma Swaraj said she asked Zarif to ensure that the $2.9-million fine imposed on the nine sailors was waived and they were released early.

The nine sailors were arrested in late 2013 after their ship, belonging to a Dubai-based firm, was seized by the Iranian government on charges of smuggling oil.

The Indian minister also said she met the family of Sushil Kapoor, one of the nine sailors, here “and apprised them of my meeting with the foreign minister of Iran”.

“I have advised our Ambassador designate to Iran, Mr Saurabh Kumar, to follow this up on priority and secure their release at the earliest,” Sushma Swaraj said in another tweet.