The hostages crisis
Bangkok, July 31
In a Press conference here to wrap up his first foreign trip, the Prime Minister asked National Security Adviser J.N. Dixit to answer a question on what the government was doing for the 6,000 Indians stranded in Iraq and who could be possible targets as hostages.
Mr Dixit said in his brief answer that this concern was logical and said the government was aware that there may be a situation requiring evacuation of all Indians in Iraq.
Mr Dixit added that preparatory work was on the anvil with regard to evacuation of Indians from Iraq, if the situation so demanded.
At this, the Prime Minister commented that the Iraq hostage crisis was at a very delicate stage and urged the media to exercise restraint.
Dr Manmohan Singh said one senior officer from the Ministry of External Affairs was being sent to Iraq. The government had deputed Mr Talmiz Ahmed, Indian Ambassador in Muscat, to Iraq for dealing with the hostage crisis.