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“When your govt has not cooperated with us, why should we cooperate with you?” Ukraine puts Indian students in hostage-like situation at Poland border

A report in the Times of India quoted family members of stranded Indian students at the Poland border, saying that the Ukrainian Immigration Officials turned them back when they tried to enter Poland.

While over 450 students have been evacuated from war-torn Ukraine, the latest reports suggest Ukraine has allegedly put Indian students in a hostage-like situation at the Poland border. A report in the Times of India quoted family members of stranded Indian students at the Poland border, saying that the Ukrainian Immigration Officials turned them back when they tried to enter Poland.

They said, “When your government has not cooperated with us, why should we cooperate with you.” Notably, the passport and travel documents of many students have been destroyed or lost during the chaos.

India had earlier abstained from voting at the UNSC resolution condemning Russia’s action agains Ukraine.

Ukrainian Ambassador had subtly and diplomatically threatened India using students as ‘leverage’

Earlier, Sergiy Kyslytsya, Ukrainian Ambassador to United Nations, had issued a subtle and diplomatic threat to India by saying that countries which abstained from voting should have thought before making a decision. Without naming India, the UAE or China, the three abstaining countries, the Ukrainian Ambassador at UNSC said, “It is exactly the safety of your nationals in Ukraine that you should be the first to vote to stop the war to save your nationals in Ukraine, and not to think that you should vote or not vote.”

Indian Embassy had advised students to coordinate before leaving

On February 26, the Indian Embassy had asked Indians, including students living in Ukraine, to stay put where they were and leave for borders only after coordinating with the Indian Embassy. The advisory read, “All Indian Citizens in Ukraine are advised to not move to any of the border posts without prior coordination with Government of India officials at the border posts (helpline numbers established) and the Emergency numbers of Embassy of India, Kyiv.”

It further read that the situation at various border checkpoints was sensitive, and the Embassy was working continuously with Indian Embassies in neighbouring countries to coordinate evacuation. However, it added, “Embassy is finding it increasingly difficult to help the crossing of those Indian nationals who reach border checkpoints without prior Intimation.”

The Wire, in a report, has quoted a student named Sahil stuck at Poland border saying, “Ukraine Border Guard is not allowing Indians to exit Ukraine. Poland Border Guard is being very helpful. But to no avail.”

Russia-Ukraine crisis

On February 24, Russia announced military action against Ukraine. The war-hit Ukraine has around 20,000 Indian nationals living there. The Indian government had issued advisories urging Indians to leave Ukraine multiple times before the war broke down between the two nations. The Indian embassies in Ukraine and bordering countries are coordinating to evacuate the Indian nationals as soon as possible. However, the Ukrainian officials are turning the Indians away, making it a hostage-like situation.

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OpIndia Staff
OpIndia Staffhttps://www.opindia.com
Staff reporter at OpIndia

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