India’s foreign minister demanded on Thursday that the United States drop the case against one of its diplomats who was arrested and strip-searched last week in New York.
Devyani Khobragade, India’s deputy consul general, was arrested for allegedly underpaying her nanny and committing visa fraud to get her into the United States.
Foreign Minister Salman Khurshid argues that the housekeeper blackmailed Khobragade, according to The Associated Press. The housekeeper threatened Khobragade over the summer that she would go to the police if a passport, work visa and money were not arranged for her.
"I broke down many times as the indignities of repeated handcuffing, stripping and cavity searches, swabbing, in a holdup with common criminals and drug addicts were all being imposed upon me despite my incessant assertions of immunity," she wrote in an email obtained by Indian media.
U.S. Marshals rejected the claim Thursday that they performed a cavity search, but confirmed they did strip-search Khobragade after arresting her.
On Wednesday, the White House said it would review the case.
Obama administration officials have described the ordeal as an "isolated incident" in U.S.-India relations. India, however, removed security barriers in front of the U.S. Embassy in New Delhi on Tuesday with bulldozers.
Secretary of State John Kerry called India’s national security adviser, Shivshankar Menon, on Wednesday to discuss the case, and expressed regret over the events that unfolded.