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Home English Mattarella confirms support for marines on armed forces day

Mattarella confirms support for marines on armed forces day


Rome, November 4 - President Sergio Mattarella on
Wednesday confirmed his full support for Massimiliano Latorre
and Salvatore Girone - two Italian marines accused by India of
killing two Indian fishermen during an anti-piracy mission in
"There are many parts of our commitment to foreign
missions," Mattarella said at the presidential palace during a
ceremony for Italian national unity and armed forces day.
"Among these is the service of marines La Torre and Girone,
to whom I confirm my full support".
The case has strained relations between Rome and New Delhi
and Italy has taken the case to international arbitration after
a long series of delays.
In August, the Hamburg-based International Tribunal for the
Law of the Sea stated that India has no jurisdiction over the
case, and put the case up to the International Court of Justice
in The Hague.
Two weeks ago Italian Defence Minister Roberta Pinotti said
that ruling was "a very important step" in Italy's efforts to
resolve the diplomatic spat with India over the marines' case.
The Indian supreme court has suspended all judicial
proceedings regarding the two Italian marines in compliance with
the Hamburg court's ruling and is due to reassess the situation
in January.
Girone is not allowed to leave India and is staying at the
Italian embassy in New Delhi.
India granted Latorre leave to return to Italy last year
after he suffered a stroke.
The marines are accused of killing fishermen Valentine (aka
Gelastine) and Ajesh Binki after allegedly mistaking them for
pirates and opening fire on their fishing trawler while guarding
the privately owned Italian-flagged oil-tanker MT Enrica Lexie
off the coast of Kerala on February 15, 2012.

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