India seeks report from UAE envoy on US ship firing

S M Krishna india picNEW DELHI: India has sought a report from its Ambassador in the UAE on the killing of an Indian fisherman in a US Navy ship firing at a docking point in Dubai even as the US today said the incident is under investigation.

External Affairs Minister S M Krishna has sought a report on the incident from Indian Ambassador to Dubai M K Lokesh apart from asking the government there to investigate the case, official sources said here.

An Indian fisherman was killed and three others were wounded yesterday when a security team onboard a US Navy ship fired at their small boat off Dubai. The fishing boat had four Indians and two Emirate nationals on board when the incident took place in Jabel Ali, a frequent docking point for American naval vessels about 30 miles southwest of Dubai, according to an UAE official.

Meanwhile, the US embassy here issued a very brief statement maintaining that firing took place after “the vessel disregarded non-lethal warnings and rapidly approached the US ship.”

“The Embassy of the US would like to convey its condolences to the families of the crew of a small motor vessel, which came under fire from the USNS Rappahannock on July 16, after the vessel disregarded non-lethal warnings and rapidly approached the US ship. We wish to inform you that the incident is under investigation,” the embassy statement said.

According to sources, the Indian Embassy in Washington also got in touch with the Pentagon and the State Department soon after the incident to seek details. In Rameswaram, Tamil Nadu, Karaiyur Fishermen Association President Malairajan said yesterday that the dead fisherman has been identified as Sekar of Periyapattinam in Ramanathapuram district.

The injured are Muniraj, Panpuvan and Murugan who also hail from Ramanathapuram, he said, adding Munira had been admitted to hospital with bullet injuries. -PTI

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