‘Italian marine accused of murdering Kerala fishermen won’t return for trial’

Rome (Italy), Jan 12. (ANI): One of two Italian marines – accused of murdering Indian fishermen off Kerala coast almost four years ago – will not be returning to India to face trial after being allowed home temporarily for medical treatment, said a senator here on Tuesday.

India had granted Massimiliano Latorre, who suffered a stroke while in New Delhi in 2014, a period of leave in Italy for medical treatment, but he was supposed to return by Friday.

According to Reuters, it was not clear when or if Latorre would return to India.

The second sailor on trial, Salvatore Girone, is being held at the Italian embassy in New Delhi.

“Massimiliano Latorre will not return to India, and furthermore, the possibility of asking for Salvatore Girone’s return is being explored,” said Nicola Latorre, president of the Senate Defence Committee.

Latorre did not provide details and did not immediately respond to calls. When contacted, the Prime Minister’s Office and the Foreign Ministry did not confirm or deny Latorre’s comments.

The two men say they accidentally killed two fishermen when they mistook a fishing boat for a pirate ship and fired warning shots while protecting an Italian oil tanker in 2012.

Italy and India have been at loggerheads over who has jurisdiction over the case, and Italy has sought international arbitration.

The fallout from India’s arrest of the marines has damaged wider relations between Italy and India, contributing to the collapse of a European Union-India summit last year.

In 2013, Italy reversed an initial decision not to send the marines back to India to stand trial after a home visit, in a bid to tone down the diplomatic row. (ANI)

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