Friday May 25, 2018
Home India No Ransom Pai...

No Ransom Paid for Release of Kerala Catholic Priest Tom Uzhunnallil: V.K. Singh

The priest, who was abducted by the Islamic State (IS) terrorists from Aden in March last year

0
//
36
V.K. Singh
Minister of State for External Affairs V.K. Singh. IANS
Republish
Reprint

Thiruvananthapuram, Sep 13, 2017: Minister of State for External Affairs Gen. V.K. Singh on Wednesday said no ransom was paid for the release of Kerala Catholic priest Tom Uzhunnallil.

The priest, who was abducted by the Islamic State (IS) terrorists from Aden in March last year, was brought to Muscat, the capital of the Sultanate of Oman on Tuesday. He has reached the Vatican, said a Church spokesperson on Wednesday.

Also Read: Kerala Catholic Priest Tom Uzhunnallil Abducted by ISIS Rescued from Yemen: Sushma Swaraj

“No ransom was paid and the reason why Oman got into the efforts for release is… when direct efforts do not yield results, indirect measures are adopted and what’s important is to solve the problem,” Singh said while addressing the media here.

On a question when the priest is expected to return to India, the Minister said: “He (Tom) will have to decide that.” (IANS)

Click here for reuse options!
Copyright 2017 NewsGram

Next Story

US Backtracks on Iraqi, Kurd Cease-fire Claim

0
//
42
An Iraqi soldier removes a Kurdish flag from Altun Kupri
An Iraqi soldier removes a Kurdish flag from Altun Kupri on the outskirts of Irbil, Iraq. VOA

Iraq, October 27: The U.S.-led coalition fighting the Islamic State announced Friday morning a cease-fire between Iraqi forces and the Kurdish Peshmerga in Northern Iraq but quickly backtracked on the claim, saying it is not an “official” cease-fire.

Army spokesman Ryan Dillon posted a clarification on Twitter to say “both parties (are) talking with one another,” but that a “cease-fire” had not been reached.

The Iraqi military and the Kurdish minority have been clashing for several weeks after the Iraqi troops moved to secure areas in northern Iraq that had been seized from IS jihadists by Kurdish forces. The Kurdish forces abandoned the land largely without resistance, though low-level clashes have been reported.

Iraqi PM rejects Kurdish offer

The areas Iraqi forces are moving into were mostly under Baghdad’s control in 2014, when Islamic State militants swept into the region. Kurdish Peshmerga and coalition forces recaptured the lands, and the Kurdistan Region has since held them.

The Iraqi leadership said it is retaking the areas to establish federal authority after a Kurdish referendum for independence in September threatened the nation’s unity. More than 92 percent of Kurds in Iraq voted “yes” in a vote Baghdad called illegal, and the international community leaders said was dangerous and ill-timed.

Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi on Thursday rejected an offer by Kurdish leaders to freeze the results of their independence referendum in favor of dialogue in order to avoid further conflict.

The Kurdistan Regional Government, in a statement, said the confrontations have hurt both sides and could lead to ongoing bloodshed and social unrest in Iraq.

“Certainly, continued fighting does not lead any side to victory, but it will drive the country towards disarray and chaos, affecting all aspects of life,” the KRG said.

‘Unified Iraq is the only way to go’

Abadi said in a statement his government will accept only the annulment of the referendum and respect for the constitution.

During a briefing Friday morning at the Pentagon, Joint Staff Director Lieutenant General Kenneth McKenzie Jr. told reporters the U.S. believes “a unified Iraq is the only way to go forward.”

He added, “We’re not helping anyone attack anyone else inside Iraq, either the Kurds or the Iraqis.”(VOA)

Next Story