Minister for Non-resident Keralites’ Affairs K. C. Joseph on Friday refuted the contention of the CPI (M) State secretariat that the State and Central governments were not making any interventions to secure the release of Indians held hostage by Somalian pirates.

The Minister said in an official release that the State and Central governments had been taking all possible steps to secure the release of seven Indian crew of MV Asphalt Venture.

Mr. Joseph noted that the Somalian government had no control over the pirates. Hence, the Indian government had been taking steps for securing the release of the hostages through official and non-official channels with caution and care. It was hoped that those efforts would succeed. However, disclosing the details of the negotiations would not help.

He added that he had discussed the matter with the Foreign Secretary Ranjan Mathai in Delhi on Thursday.

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