Indian Navy rescues 14 Lankan refugees from islet

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Ramanathapuram, Tamil Nadu, Jun 26 (UNI) The Indian Navy today rescued 14 Sri Lankan refugees, including five children, who were stranded in an islet off Mandapam Coast here.

Official sources said the refugees, hailing from Mannar region in the island nation, had hired a clandestine boat operator to reach Tamil Nadu, last evening. The boat operator, fearing action from the Indian Navy and Indian Coast Guard (ICG), had dropped them in the deserted islet.

The refugees, who were starving without food and drinking water in the islet, were noticed by two Indian Naval patrol vessels, this afternoon. They were brought to the naval detachment here and provided food. A woman refugee, who had fainted in the islet, was given medical treatment and her condition was stable, the sources added.

After preliminary investigations, they were sent to the Mandapam Special Refugee Camp here this evening.

Meanwhile, a fresh batch of eleven Sri Lankan refugees, including four children, took refuge in the Mandapam camp.

The refugees, hailing from Trincomalee and Jaffna regions, had arrived in Tamil Nadu recently with valid documents. They registered their names with the officials and were housed in the camp.

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