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Two Indian citizens died in the Russia-Ukraine conflict

(Reuters) – India’s foreign ministry said on Tuesday that two Indian citizens recruited by the Russian army had recently died in the war between Russia and Ukraine.

The Indian embassy in Moscow pressed Russian authorities, including the defense ministry, for the immediate repatriation of the remains, the ministry said in a statement.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs also called on the Russian ambassador in New Delhi and the authorities in Moscow to quickly release and return all Indian citizens serving in the Russian army, the statement added.

India has demanded a confirmed cessation of further recruitment of its citizens by the Russian army, urging Indian citizens to exercise caution when seeking employment opportunities in Russia.

In May, Indian police arrested four people linked to a human trafficking ring on charges of luring young men to Russia with promises of lucrative jobs or university places only to force them to fight in the war in Ukraine.

In March, the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) reported that about 35 Indian men had been defrauded in this way.

New Delhi and Moscow have had close relations for decades, and India has refused to condemn Russia over its war with Ukraine, calling on both sides to end the conflict through dialogue and diplomacy.

(Reporting by Devika Nair in Bengaluru; Editing by Sandra Maler)