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Indian priest abducted in Yemen could be released soon

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Image source: www.breitbart.com

Yemen: An Indian priest abducted by gunmen in Yemen last month is safe and could be released soon, a Catholic group said on Sunday, quoting the Indian foreign minister.

Father Tom Uzhunnalil was captured from the southern Yemeni city of Aden by gunmen who killed at least 15 people at an old people’s home in an attack that was condemned by Pope Francis.

The Catholic Bishops’ Conference of India (CBCI) said a delegation met Indian Foreign Minister Sushma Swaraj who said the government was working to secure the priest’s safe return.

“She has assured us Father Tom is safe and negotiations are on for his release which could happen very soon,” said Father Joseph Chinnaiyan, deputy secretary of the CBCI.

Media reports last week said the priest was killed by Islamic State militants on Good Friday, although no one has claimed responsibility for last month’s attack in which gunmen killed four Indian nuns, two Yemeni female staff members, eight elderly residents and a guard.

Father Chinnaiyan said the reports were inaccurate.

Aden has been racked by lawlessness since Hadi supporters, backed by Gulf Arab military forces, drove fighters of the Iran-allied Houthi group from the city in July last year.

International aid groups have pulled most of their foreign staff from Yemen due to security concerns.

Credits: Reuters

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2 Indian Research Teams Win Amazon Web Services Cloud Grants

Bengaluru-based Indian Institute for Human Settlements won the grant for the project

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Indian, Research, Teams
The Centre of Studies in Resources Engineering (CSRE) at Indian Institute of Technology-Bombay won the grant for its project. Pixabay

Two teams from India made it to 21 winning projects that will be awarded $1.5 million worth of cloud services, grants and technical support through the Earth Observation Cloud Credits Programme, Amazon Web Services (AWS) has announced.

The Centre of Studies in Resources Engineering (CSRE) at Indian Institute of Technology-Bombay won the grant for its project titled “Crop inventory mapping from SAR data on cloud computing platform”.

Bengaluru-based Indian Institute for Human Settlements won the grant for the project titled “Integrating Earth Observation Data with Censuses and Sample Surveys to Estimate Development Indicators for India”.

Indian, Research, Teams
Two teams from India made it to 21 winning projects that will be awarded $1.5 million worth of cloud services, grants and technical support. Pixabay

The Group on Earth Observations (GEO) and AWS in December announced the programme, a joint collaboration to offer research organizations access to AWS Cloud services.

Also Read- NIRDPR Launches Initiative to Help Rural Poor Farm Holds Cope with Climate Change

Under the Amazon Sustainability Data Initiative (ASDI), this programme will enable Earth observations and applications to support sustainable environmental development including the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction, and the Paris Agreement on Climate Change. (IANS)