Italian marine will not return to India for trial, says senator

  • HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times, Rome/New Delhi
  • Updated: Jan 13, 2016 01:26 IST
Italian marines Salvatore Girone, left, and Massimiliano Latorre say they mistook Kerala fishermen for pirates and fired warning shots into the water, in 2012. (AP File Photo)

An Italy senator said on Tuesday Massimiliano Latorre, one of the two Italian marines accused of killing two Kerala fishermen in 2012, will not return to India after being allowed to go home temporarily for medical treatment. Latorre’s deadline to return to India expires on Friday.

Latorre and Salvatore Girone, part of a military security team protecting a privately owned cargo ship, say they mistook Indian fishermen for pirates and fired warning shots into the water during the incident.

“Massimiliano Latorre will not go back to India and work is being done on the possibility of requesting for Salvatore Girone to be able to return to Italy,” Nicola Latorre, who is the head of the Italian Senate’s defence committee, was quoted by news agency ANSA as saying.

India had allowed Latorre to return to Italy after he suffered a stroke in 2014. Girone is being held in the Italian Embassy in New Delhi, forbidden by the Indian authorities from leaving the country.

The marines’ arrest triggered a diplomatic rift between Rome and New Delhi as they presented different versions of the attack. Italy has argued that the men shot the two fishermen in self-defence and that the marines should be tried in their own country because the incident occurred in international waters.

In April 2012, Rome paid $190,000 to each of the victims’ families as compensation. In return, the families dropped their cases against the marines, but the state’s case has yet to come to trial.

(With inputs from agencies)

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