The Italian marines facing charges of killing two Indian fishermen in February 2012 will not be tried in India, and face criminal proceedings in Italy said the Permanent Court of Arbitration.
In a setback to India, the Permanent Court of Arbitration (PCA) at the Hague has decided that in a dispute between India and Italy, the former is precluded from exercising its jurisdiction to try the two Marines.
This decision set backs to February 2012 when two Italian Marines Massimiliano Latorre and Salvatore Girone fired shots. These shots killed two Indian fisherman who were on board in an Indian vessel. These two marines were released from India by an order of Supreme Court.
India contended that Italian marines fired without any notice. As a consequence, Italy had approached the International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea, an arbitral tribunal under the International Court of Justice in 2015, and the matter was heard by the Permanent Court of Arbitration in July 2019.
The Italian Foreign ministry said, “Italian Marines Massimiliano Latorre and Salvatore Girone are entitled to immunity from the jurisdiction of Indian courts in relation to the acts occurred during the incident of 15 February 2012; India is therefore precluded from exercising its jurisdiction over the Marines. The Arbitral Tribunal has therefore agreed on the Italian position that the Marines, being members of the Italian armed forces in the official exercise of their duties, cannot be tried by Indian courts.”
Upholding the jurisdiction to hear and decide the dispute between the countries, the PCA ruled in favour of the European nation, that Italy would have jurisdiction to decide on the question of the immunity of the marines.
To sum up ,Italy as a result is liable to pay compensation to India, PCA ruled.