Although the legal phase of the matter is over, the Indian government should continue to exercise diplomatic pressure on Italy.
The award of the ad-hoc arbitral tribunal constituted under Annex VII of the United Nations Convention on the Law of Sea (UNCLOS), only the operative portions of which were publicly released last week, appears to have brought to an end, an eight year long tussle between New Delhi and Rome on the exercise of criminal jurisdiction over two Italian marines accused of manslaughter.
As many would remember, on February 15, 2012, two Italian marines Sgt. Massimiliano Latorre and Sgt. Salvatore Girone, deployed on board an oil tanker MV Enrica Lexie flying the Italian flag en route from Sri Lanka to Egypt, at roughly 20.5 nautical miles off the Indian coast, opened fire, killing two Indian fisherman on board an Indian vessel St. Antony after claiming to have mistaken them for pirates.
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