السبت , مايو 22 2021

Indian nurses trapped in Iraq 'free'

Iraqi security forces outside Samarra - 26 JuneIraqi forces are trying to take back towns and cities seized by Sunni rebels

A group of 46 Indian nurses trapped in Iraq for the past three weeks has been freed, Indian media reports say.

The nurses were reportedly handed over to Indian officials in the Kurdish city of Erbil and are due to be flown home on Saturday.

The nurses were working at a hospital in the city of Tikrit when Sunni militants launched an offensive.

Tikrit is among a number of towns and cities seized by jihadist-led Sunni rebels in recent weeks.

On Thursday, Indian officials said the nurses were “safe and unharmed”, but had been moved out of Tikrit.

Indian media reports said the nurses had been pressured into boarding buses and leaving the hospital by Isis fighters, but no further details were given about the circumstances in which they left or where they were headed.

Earlier in the week, some of the nurses told the BBC by phone that fighting had reached the hospital compound and there had been several explosions close to their hiding place.

India’s ministry of external affairs is yet to confirm the report of their release.

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