1. Gulf crisis: Kerala CM writes to PM Narendra Modi, expresses concern over Indians in Qatar

Gulf crisis: Kerala CM writes to PM Narendra Modi, expresses concern over Indians in Qatar

Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan today sought the Centre's intervention to ensure safety of 6.5 lakh Indians, including Keralites, residing in Qatar following recent developments in the Middle East.

By: | Thiruvananthapuram | Updated: June 5, 2017 10:07 PM
Vijayan also wanted the Indian Embassy in Doha to be “suitably empowered” to respond presciently to the concerns of the Indian community in the country. (PTI)

Chief Minister of Kerala, Pinanarayi Vijayan on Monday wrote a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the Ministry of External Affairs and spoke about the situation of Keralites stuck in Qatar, ANI reported. According to the report, the Kerala CM said that there were nearly 3 lakh people in Qatar and expressed concern about their safety to the PM and the EAM. He also said, “Would like to place on record support of Kerala to considered stance that Centre would take on the issue, given the complexities involved”. Earlier, a migration official spoke to IANS and said that Indians and Keralites, in particular, had no reason to panic over the Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Egypt, UAE, Libya and Yemen’s decision to cut off diplomatic ties with Qatar.

Earlier in the day, the 6 said countries had cut all diplomatic ties with Qatar due to its alleged sponsoring of terrorism. AFP quoted Saudi news agency SPA saying that the country had cut ties and closed its border to “protect its national security from the dangers of terrorism and extremism”. The SPA also reported quoting a Saudi official saying that the country had decided to “sever diplomatic and consular ties with Qatar, and to close all land, sea and aviation ports”.

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The foreign ministry of Qatar meanwhile released a statement regretting the decision by the said countries to cut off diplomatic ties. “The measures are unjustified and are based on claims and allegations that have no basis in fact,” Al-Jazeera quoted the Qatar Foreign Ministry. Riyadh meanwhile has accused Qatar of backing terrorism and extremism, while Bahrain has blamed Qatar for interfering with its internal affairs.

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