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Indians on seized ship ‘MSC Aries’ not detained, to return once weather improves : Iran envoy

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TEHRAN : Iran’s Ambassador to India, Iraj Elahi, told India Today TV on Tuesday that all the 17 Indian nationals who were on board an Israeli-linked container ship ‘MSC Aries’ that was seized by the Iranian military are safe. He added that the crew of the ship have not been detained and they can leave the ship whenever they wish to.

According to the Iranian envoy, the weather situation in the Persian Gulf is not good and the Indians on the ship will be sent home once the weather clears. He said Iran’s officials informed the Ministry of External Affairs that the Indian nationals will be sent home once weather conditions improve and a boat can be used to reach the ship.

Iraj Elahi also said Iran has also informed Russia, Pakistan and the Philippines that their crew on the ship is safe.


The Iranian envoy also spoke about the attack on Israel and said, “Israel claims that it has an ‘iron dome’ or an anti-missile defence system. We wanted to prove to the world that Israel is not doing as it seems.” He added that Iran has two primary goals for attacking Iran — “to send a message and destroy their military capability”.

Iraj Elahi said that despite the distance between Iran and Israel, “we can easily reach their territory”. He also alleged that Israel is trying to hide the extent of the damage caused by the Iranian attack.

Iran launched more than 300 missiles, cruise missiles and drones on Israel on Sunday. No deaths were caused by the attack and Israel said it caused light damage to one of its military facilities.

The attack was in retaliation to a suspected Israeli strike on the Iranian embassy in Damascus, Syria, where one of Iran’s top commanders was killed.

Slamming Israel, Iraj Elahi said, “Israel does not adhere to any international law rules. It doesn’t pay any attention to humanitarian principles. Israel does not have any moral principles. So, we believe that we have sent a strong message to Israel that it would be benefit them to not repeat any mistake.”

The ambassador added that he believes Israel has received the message.

He added that Iran is not looking to expand the military tension in the region. “Our military operation was just aiming to save peace and stability of the region and not allow expansion of the tension,” said Ambassador Iraj Elahi.

When asked about his view on India’s role in the conflict between Iran and Israel, Iraj Elahi said, “We believe that India has a rising power as a big country. As an important partner for Israel and Iran, it can play an active and constructive role. We hope that not only India, but all countries have a neutral position in this tension.”The Iranian ambassador said any welcome is welcome to play an active role in “saving the peace and stability” in the region.

Source : BT

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