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Russia-Ukraine crisis: India asks all its nationals to leave Kharkiv 'immediately'

Kyiv [Ukraine]: The Indian embassy in Ukraine on Wednesday issued a fresh advisory for its nationals living in Kharkiv and asked them that they "must leave" immediately and reach Pesochin, Babaye and Bezlyudovka settlements by 1800 hrs, amid the escalating military operation in Ukraine. "Urgent advisory to all Indian Nationals in Kharkiv. For their safety and security, they must leave Kharkiv immediately in light of the deteriorating situation. They should Proceed to Pesochin, Babaye and Bezlyudovka as soon as possible for their safety. Under all circumstances they must reach these settlements by 1800 hrs (Ukrainian time) today," India in Ukraine said in a statement. Meanwhile, a total of 16 flights have already brought back stranded Indian nationals from Ukraine till today. Foreign Secretary Harsh Vardhan Shringla said on Tuesday said that Indian nationals have left Kyiv and nearly 60 per cent of Indians in Ukraine have left the country so far. "All of our nationals have left Kyiv. The information with us is that we have no more nationals left in Kyiv, nobody has contacted us from Kyiv since. All our enquiries reveal that each and every one of our nationals have come out of Kyiv," Shringla said at a media briefing on the evacuation of Indian citizens from Ukraine in the wake of Russia's military operations. He said out of an estimated 20,000 Indian citizens in Ukraine, 60 per cent have left the country since the first advisory was issued by the government. "We had an estimated 20,000 Indian nationals in Ukraine at the time we issued our first advisory. Approximately 12,000 have left Ukraine so far, which means 60 per cent of the people have left the country. Of the remaining 40 per cent, roughly half remain in the conflict zone in Kharkiv and the other half have either reached the western border of Ukraine or are heading towards the western border. They are generally out of conflict areas," Shringla said. He also said a high-level meeting was also chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

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