New Delhi: India’s ‘Operation Kaveri’ began its first successful evacuation drive from conflict-hit Sudan on Tuesday.
INS Sumedha with 278 stranded Indians on board today departed from Port Sudan for Jeddah, where 2 Indian Air Force C-130J planes are already on standby to bring them back home.
The External Affairs Ministry spokesperson Arindam Bagchi confirmed the evacuation of first batch of Indian nationals from Sudan. He also tweeted photos of stranded Indian nationals on INS Sumedha.
First batch of stranded Indians leave Sudan under #OperationKaveri.
INS Sumedha with 278 people onboard departs Port Sudan for Jeddah. pic.twitter.com/4hPrPPsi1I
— Arindam Bagchi (@MEAIndia) April 25, 2023
He also tweeted a small video, in which the evacuated citizens could be heard chanting ‘Jai Hind’ and waving the Indian flag.
A day ago, External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar had tweeted that 500 Indians have reached the Port of Sudan and will soon be evacuated via ships & aircrafts.
Operation Kaveri gets underway to bring back our citizens stranded in Sudan.
About 500 Indians have reached Port Sudan. More on their way.
Our ships and aircraft are set to bring them back home.
Committed to assist all our bretheren in Sudan. pic.twitter.com/8EOoDfhlbZ
— Dr. S. Jaishankar (@DrSJaishankar) April 24, 2023
According to reports, there are about 3,000 Indian nationals stuck in war-torn country.
The Minister of State (MoS) for External Affairs V Muraleedharan is also likely to go to Jeddah to oversee & streamline the evacuation drive.
China, France & others flying out their citizens
Not just India but many other nations are scrambling to evacuate their residents from the country, hit by wide-scale violence. US & UK have announced flying their diplomats out of the country while Saudi Arabia, Germany, Italy and Spain have already done so.
China evacuated its first batch of citizens from conflict-hit country on Tuesday while South Korea also sent its military plane to lift out its nationals.
The spate of evacuation comes amid 72-hours ceasefire announced by the warring groups in Sudan. Sensing good opportunity, all the nations rushed their aircrafts & ships to evacuate their nationals.
Why Sudan caught up in deep mess
Sudan’s capital Khartoum along with other prominent regionas was hit by violence on April 15, after forces of Army Chief & his deputy got into an ugly battle for power control. Army Chief’s deputy Mohamed Hamdan Daglo commands support of paramilitary Rapid Support Forces.
Till date, more than 4,000 are said to have been killed in bloody clashes & about 4,000 inured in spate of violence.