Home India Iran Says It Will Allow India Access To ‘Detained’ Indian Crew Members

Iran Says It Will Allow India Access To ‘Detained’ Indian Crew Members

Former Israel envoy upset about India’s ‘weak’ and ‘balanced’ statement on Iran attack
External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar. (Twitter/DrSJaishankar)

External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar confirmed that he has been in touch with both his Israeli and Iranian counterparts regarding the current situation in West Asia. Taking to his Twitter handle, Jaishankar stated on Sunday. “Just concluded a conversation with Israel FM @Israel_katz.”

Jaishankar’s tweet follows a statement from the MEA which stated that it was “seriously concerned” at the developments in the region. “We are seriously concerned at the escalation of hostilities between Israel and Iran which threatens the peace and security in the region,” the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) said. “We call for immediate de-escalation, exercise of restraint, stepping back from violence and return to the path of diplomacy.”

India’s balanced stance on the Iranian attack has not pleased everyone within Tel Aviv. Taking to X, Daniel Carmon the former Israeli ambassador to India and Sri Lanka responded to the External Affairs Minister’s tweet by stating. “Overdue conversation between both  FMs, following the large-scale attack by Iran on Israel. As a supporter of Indian foreign policy, I find the weak, balanced @MEA statement disappointing. I expected India to publicly condemn the attack, as did so many other friends/partners of Israel around the world. I hope that the FMs’ call included a condemnation of Iran’s attack. At least that.”

Carmon’s statement on India’s stance is somewhat surprising given that the former Israeli envoy had praised India’s pro-Israel stance post the Hamas attack. Speaking to India media earlier he had said that, “The wonderful ties and the strategic relations between India and Israel are well known. And it was only natural and very much appreciated that the government of India made a statement, a very quick one, of support to its strategic partner, Israel. These relations are very strong and will continue.”

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Meanwhile, the External Affairs Minister said that he had also spoken with his Iranian counterpart Hossein Amir Abdollahian regarding the fate of the Indian crew members who had been on board on the MSC Aries. The Israel-owned commercial ship had been boarded by Iranian special forces off the coast of the UAE on Saturday and the ship remains in Iranian custody.

“Spoke to Iranian FM @Amirabdolahian this evening. Took up the release of 17 Indian crew members of MSC Aries. Discussed the current situation in the region. Stressed the importance of avoiding escalation, exercising restraint and returning to diplomacy.

Agreed to remain in touch,” he tweeted on X.

A translated version of the Iranian ministry of foreign affairs on the call stated that, “Dr. Amir Abdollahian mentioned that they are following up on the details related to the detained ship and the possibility of representatives of the Indian government meeting with the crew of the mentioned ship will be provided soon.”