Thiruvananthapuram: A Keralite nurse working in Libya and her one-and-half year old son have been killed in a bomb blast in the ongoing civil strife in that country, her family said on Saturday.
Sunu Sathyan and the toddler were sleeping in their house yesterday when it was rocked by an explosion, killing them, her father Sathyan Nair from Kottayam district, said.
The victim was a nurse in Zawia Medical centre AZ Zawiya, Libya. Her husband Vipin Kumar, who is a male nurse in Libya, was away on duty.
Nair has sought government help to bring back the bodies. "I got information yesterday that my daughter and grandson died in a bomb blast at her residence while they were sleeping," he said in his letter to the government.
External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj said she has sought details from the Indian embassy in the violence-hit country.
"I have asked for a report reg (regarding) the death of an Indian nurse and her child from our Ambassador in Libya," Swaraj tweeted.
I have asked for a report reg the death of an Indian nurse and her child from our Ambassador in Libya.— Sushma Swaraj (@SushmaSwaraj) March 26, 2016
Nair, in his letter through Kaduthuruthy MLA Mons Joseph, sought help to bring back the bodies of his daughter and grandson.
"I came to know that the blast occurred due to regular fights between rival groups in Libya. So I humbly request your good self to make available the detailed information about the incident and help us bring back the dead body of my beloved daughter and her son, whom we have never seen."
I also request you to extend all help and protection to her husband, who is in a state of shock after the blast," Nair said.
When contacted, Kerala Information and Public Relations Minister K C Joseph told PTI the state government had informed the External Affairs Ministry about the matter.
Meanwhile, state Home Minister Ramesh Chennithala said eight to nine people are still stranded in Libya and efforts are on to bring them back.
"The Kerala government is alert on this issue. We are in touch with the External Affairs Ministry and the Embassy in Libya. We are trying to evacuate all people who are stranded there," Chennithala said.
Kerala Chief Minister Oommen Chandy asserted the state government was trying to bring back the bodies.
"One Keralite nurse and her son have died in Libya. I have contacted the people from Kerala who are still there and they want immediate help from the Indian embassy. I have also requested that their bodies be brought back to Kerala. We will do our best to bring the others who are stranded in Libya. They wish to come back. They are safe at the moment. I am trying to contact the Indian embassy in Libya," Chandy told the media here.
Talking about the abduction of Keralite priest Father Tom Uzhunnalil, who has been captured by the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIS) in Yemen, he said a request has been made to the government to interfere in the matter as "the Indian embassy in Yemen was not functioning properly at the moment".
"MEA Sushma Swaraj has promised she will do whatever she can to save him. Once again, we request and appeal to the government to interfere," the chief minister added.
Earlier today, the Indian government confirmed the capture of Father Tom Uzhunnalil and said efforts were underway to ensure he was released.
"Fr Tom Uzhunnallil -- an Indian national from Kerala was abducted by a terror group in Yemen. We r making all efforts to secure his release," External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj tweeted.
Fr Tom Uzhunnallil - an Indian national from Kerala was abducted by a terror group in Yemen. We r making all efforts to secure his release.— Sushma Swaraj (@SushmaSwaraj) March 26, 2016
Her reaction comes after growing alarm among the Christian community following an ominous report by the terror outfit to crucify him around Easter.
Father Uzhunnalil was kidnapped on March 4 after four gunmen attacked a retirement home in Aden run by the Missionaries of Charity, killing sixteen people, including four nuns....