EAM: Want to find ways to de-escalate West Asia crisis

He told reporters that he has spoken to his counterparts in Israel and Iran to de-escalate tensions in the region, which is extremely important for the global economy.
External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar
External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar (Photo | AP)

BENGALURU: External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar said on Monday that the situation (in West Asia) is “extremely sensitive”.

He told reporters here that he has spoken to his counterparts in Israel and Iran to de-escalate tensions in the region, which is extremely important for the global economy. “We also understand that they have concerns.

For the rest of the world and definitely for India, we would like to find ways of de-escalating the situation there,” he said. “We have 90 lakh Indians living in this enormously sensitive region. A large part of our shipping passes through this region and also, our major oil supplies come from here,” he said.

Regarding the release of 17 Indian crew members of a cargo vessel seized by the Iranian military near the Strait of Hormuz, Jaishankar said he had spoken to his Iranian counterpart about it.

Global leader like Modi has the guts to take right decisions: Jaishankar

Jaishankar told his Iranian counterpart that the crew members from India should be released.

He said there have been some follow up conversations between the Indian Embassy and the Iranian authorities. “I want our embassy people to actually go there and meet these people. That will be my first point of satisfaction. Secondly, I would absolutely press for the people to come back to India as quickly as we can (get them) and my colleague in Tehran was quite responsive,” he added.

The minister quipped that ‘Modi ki guarantee’ is overriding (protection) and is “effective inside and outside the country for all Indians.” This, he said, was demonstrated on several occasions; in the rescue operations of Indians, who were stranded abroad during the Covid-19 pandemic, the Russia-Ukraine war, in Sudan, etc., (Iran on Monday stated that it will permit Indian authorities to meet the 17 crew members following the conversation between Jaishankar and Iran’s Foreign Minister Hossein Amir-Abdollahian.)

On the question of growing global instability because of the prolonged Russia-Ukraine and Israel-Palestine wars, and the latest offensive by Iran against Israel, Jaishankar admitted that the “coming years are going to be extremely difficult for the world” and added that it is “important to strengthen the hands of a strong global leader like Modi. He has the guts to make the right decisions.”

On the safety of Indian students abroad, with some of them reportedly dying under mysterious circumstances, he said such incidents are a big concern for the government and are being analysed by the Indian embassies.

“To every Indian going out, you have Modi’s guarantee. Student welfare is particularly important for us,” he said and pointed out that all Indian embassies have been asked to keep a closer watch on students and brief them on personal safety.

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