MEA rubbishes report of 20 Indians dead in Yemen air strike; says only seven reported missing

Wednesday, Sep 9, 2015,20:26 IST By metrovaartha A A A

New Delhi | Seven Indians were reported missing but none was reported killed after their boats  plying between Berbera (Somalia) and Mokha (Yemen) came under bombardment by Saudi Arabia led Alliance forces, MEA spokesperson Vikas Swarup said today.
Reacting to yesterday’s media report that 20 Indians had been killed in the bombardment, Mr Swarup said as per the reports available to him, 13 of the 20 Indians travelling in the boats were alive.
”We have ascertained that there were two boats one of which was plying between Berbera (Somalia) and Mokha (Yemen). The boats came under aerial bombardment in the afternoon of  September 8. The boats were carrying a total of 20 Indian crew members of which 13 are alive and 7 are reported missing,” he said.
He said no other information was currently available regarding the identities of the Indian nationals.
”Embassy officials are in constant touch with local authorities and are also due to meet with the boat owner today at which point of time more information would be available,” he said.
Yesterday, a news agency report from Sana’a said at least 20 Indian nationals were killed in an air strike by the Saudi-led alliance on fuel smugglers at a Yemeni airport.
The report quoted fishermen, and also Houthi-rebels-run news agency Saba besides medical sources.
The alliance forces have intensified their air strikes on Yemeni capital Sanaa and other parts of the country since last week after a Houthi missile attack killed at least 60 Saudi, Bahrini and UEA soldiers at a military camp east of Sanaa.