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Thursday, December 01 2022
World

UN tribunal tells India to suspend all trials against Italian marines

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Hamburg: Hearing Italy’s appeal in the case of its two marines accused of murder in India, the president of a UN tribunal, the International Tribunal on Law of the Sea (ITLOS), Vladimir Golitsyn, today asked both India and Italy to “suspend” all court proceedings involving two Italian marines charged with killing of two Indian fishermen in 2012 and also refrain from initiating new ones that might “aggravate or extend” the dispute. Vladimir Golitsyn also asked the two countries to submit the initial report in the entire incident by September 24.

The 21-member UN-mandated court located in this German city issued the order with 15 in favour and six against.ITLOS is an independent judicial body established by the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea to adjudicate disputes arising out of the interpretation and application of the Convention.

The judge said pending a decision by the arbitral tribunal, “Italy and India shall both suspend all court proceedings and shall refrain from initiating new ones which might aggravate or extend the dispute submitted to the… arbitral tribunal or might jeopardise or prejudice the carrying out of any decision which the arbitral tribunal may render.”

He further said, “Italy and India shall each submit to the Tribunal the initial report…not later than 24 September 2015, and authorises the President, after that date, to request such information from the Parties as he may consider appropriate.”

Italy was dissatisfied with India’s handling of the marine’s issue, and took the matter to the ITLOS challenging Indian jurisdiction in the case.   The two marines, Sergeant Latorre and Sergeant Girone, who were on board ship ‘Enrica Lexie’, are accused of killing two Indian fishermen on February 15, 2012 off the Kerala coast. Italy has pleaded before the UN Tribunal that India must cease to exercise any form of jurisdiction over the Enrica Lexie Incident and the Italian Marines, including any measure of restraint with respect to the two marines.

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