New Delhi, July 31 (IANS) Syria has no information about the 39 Indians believed to have been taken captive by the Islamic State (IS) terrorist organisation, the country’s Ambassador Riad Kamel Abbas said on Monday.
“As of now, we have no information about those missing Indians,” Abbas said while speaking about the situation in Syria at an event organised by the Observer Research Foundation think tank. “Whatever we know is what has been reported in the media.”
He said the Syrian intelligence chief visited New Delhi recently and several officials from India’s Ministry of External Affairs have also visited Syria in connection with the case of the missing Indians.
The 39 Indian construction workers, mostly from Punjab, had gone missing after the IS took control of the Iraqi city of Mosul in 2014.
However, even after the liberation of Mosul in July by Iraqi forces, there are no signs of the missing Indians.
It is believed they may be held captive in the Syrian city of Raqqa, the self-declared capital of the IS caliphate.
Abbas said Syrian forces have besieged Raqqa and the city was set to fall soon.
“What we are doing is trying to a create a safe passage for civilians in Raqqa to come out,” he said. “If the Indians are in Raqqa, they can definitely come out safely.”