New Delhi: Indian Air Force (IAF) Wing Commander Abhinandan Varthaman, currently held captive by Pakistan, will be released on Friday. The announcement was made by Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan. (Also read: Catch LIVE Updates of India-Pakistan Standoff Here)Also Read - Navjot Singh Sidhu Calls Pak PM Imran Khan 'Bada Bhai', Faces Backlash From BJP
Khan said, “In our desire of peace, I announce that tomorrow, and as a first step to open negotiations, Pakistan will be releasing the Indian Air Force officer in our custody.” Also Read - Ramiz Raja, Shoaib Akhtar React After ICC Announces Pakistan as Hosts of Champions Trophy 2025
India had made it amply clear, as soon as it was confirmed that Varthaman was in Pakistan’s custody, that it wanted its personnel back. It said that Pakistan was to ensure that no harm came to the Indian defence personnel in its custody. Also Read - Imran Khan Takes Note of Argument Between Shoaib Akhtar, PTV Host
India had also taken umbrage to the fact that Pakistan had breached the Geneva Convention by ill-treating Varthaman. It said Pakistan had indulged in a ‘vulgar display’ of the injured pilot which was also in violation of international humanitarian law.
Meanwhile, the IT Ministry instructed YouTube to remove as many as 11 videos relating to Varthaman.
Google, the parent company of Youtube said the company complies with “valid legal requests from authorities wherever possible, consistent with our longstanding policy and act quickly to remove such material”.
“Data on government requests to remove content from Google services is regularly updated in our transparency report,” the spokesperson added.
Varthaman was held captive by Pakistan on Wednesday when IAF forced Pakistan jets back following an attempt to target Indian military installations in retaliatory strikes.