03/27/2018, 09.36
INDIA
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Delhi government to repatriate bodies of 39 workers killed by ISIS in Iraq

The victims were kidnapped in Mosul in 2014. Their bodies found in a mass grave. Criticism of the government of Narenda Modi, for publishing the identity of the workers before talking with the families.

New Delhi (AsiaNews / Agencies) - The bodies of the 39 Indian workers killed by Islamic State (IS) militants in Iraq will be repatriated soon, perhaps as early as next week. This was announced yesterday by Indian Foreign Minister, Sushma Swaraj, meeting the relatives of the victims kidnapped in Mosul in 2014 after their bodies were found in a mass grave.

Last week, Ms. Swaraj published news about the identification of the bodies in the media, a move that sparked criticisms of "insensitivity" towards the families of the workers who learned of the deaths of their families on television. In the four years since their disappearance the Delhi government has repeatedly declared that it is doing its utmost to recover their bodies. In July of last year Swaraj had affirmed before the Lok Sabha (Lower House of the Indian Parliament) that "from the latest information from third party sources, they are all safe".

The victims had gone to Iraq in search of work, despite the risks of Islamic fundamentalism. The DNA investigations confirmed their identities: 27 are from the Punjab state; 4 from Himachal Pradesh, 6 come from Bihar and two from West Bengal. Rajrani Sharma, wife of Pritpal, spoke with tears in her eyes of her shock at the minister's announcement. " "They assured us over and over again that everything was all right - that they were alive and that the government was searching for them," she said.

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