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Union Minister of State for External Affairs Meenakashi Lekhi (Photo/ANI)
Union Minister of State for External Affairs Meenakashi Lekhi (Photo/ANI)

Ukraine crisis: India stands by its commitment to protect its citizens, says Meenakashi Lekhi

ANI | Updated: Feb 26, 2022 13:50 IST

New Delhi [India], February 26 (ANI): Amid Russia's ongoing military operations in Ukraine, Union Minister of State for External Affairs Meenakashi Lekhi on Saturday said that India stands by its commitment to protecting its citizens and is making all efforts to extricate them from war-hit Ukraine.
Speaking to ANI, Lekhi said, "We are helping our students (in Ukraine). In January, we had started building the database and also gave a warning in the month of February. Some 4,000 people have moved out while some are stuck there."
Reiterating the government's commitment to protecting its citizens, she said, "We are trying to extricate them in bunches. As Ukraine's airspace is closed, we are using land routes and working with other countries to extricate our citizens. The prime minister has been clear on this issue that the ministries have to be people-centric."
Meanwhile, a special flight of Air India AI-1943 landed at Bucharest in Romania for the evacuation of stranded Indians in Ukraine on Saturday morning.
This is the first special flight that is traveling through another route after the air route to Ukraine was shut down.

Earlier, Air India had informed that it will operate two flights from Delhi to Bucharest (Romania) and Budapest (Hungary) on Saturday.
The Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) on Thursday also sent teams to the land borders with Ukraine in Hungary, Poland, Slovak Republic, and Romania to assist the evacuation of Indian nationals.
Meanwhile, a number of explosions were heard in the capital city of Ukraine as the Russian special military operation entered the second day, local media reported on Friday.
On Monday, Russian President Vladimir Putin recognized Ukraine's breakaway regions - Donetsk and Luhansk - as independent entities. Later, Putin ordered special military operations "to protect" the people in the Donbas region.
Several countries including the UK, the US, Canada, and the European Union have condemned Russia's military operations and imposed sanctions on Moscow. (ANI)