NEW DELHI — India’s top court on Tuesday directed the government to respond to an Italian marine’s plea to continue to stay in Italy during arbitration over the 2012 fatal shootings of two Indian fishermen in which he and a fellow marine are implicated.
The government’s legal representative told the court that it had no objection to Massimiliano Latorre’s request to remain in Italy pending the decision of the arbitration court in The Hague, Netherlands.
The Supreme Court has asked the government to file its response by Sept. 28.
India has accused Latorre and Salvatore Girone of killing the two fishermen in Indian waters while they were assigned to anti-piracy duties aboard an Italian commercial ship. Italy says the marines thought the fishermen were pirates.
Latorre has been in Italy since 2014 for medical treatment after suffering a stroke in India. In May, India’s top court allowed Girone to return to Italy while the arbitration proceedings take place.
The case has strained relations between India and Italy, which disagree on the facts of the case and who has jurisdiction. Italy has also complained bitterly about the fact that, in four years, India has never formally charged either of the marines with any crime.