India bound by apex court direction on Italian envoy

Last Updated: Monday, March 18, 2013 - 20:14

New Delhi: India said it is bound by the directions of the Supreme Court which Monday pulled up the Italian envoy for reneging on an undertaking given to the court and directed he cannot leave the country till April 2, when the matter comes up again.

"We are bound by the directions of the court," external affairs ministry spokesperson Syed Akbaruddin said here.

On a note verbale that Italy has sent to India saying that restricting the movement of Ambassador Daniele Mancini would violate the Vienna Convention on immunity to diplomats, the spokesperson said India is "conscious of the provisions of the Vienna Convention and our obligations under it, but we are also bound by the directions of the Supreme Court and have made it clear to them (Rome)".

He said India`s mission in Rome received the note verbale, "an ordinary means of communication between two governments", on March 15 drawing New Delhi`s attention to the Vienna Convention.

Mancini had given an undertaking to the apex court that two Italian marines facing trial for the killing of two Indian fishermen would return after casting their vote for the elections. But on March 11, the Italian embassy said they would not be returning.

The prime minister had warned Italy of "consequences" and the government reviewing its ties with Italy. The Supreme Court last week ordered that the envoy cannot leave the country.

On the possibility of an out of court settlement between the two sides, the spokesperson said after the court decides on April 2, the next steps would be decided.

India is reviewing its relations with Italy following the envoy reneging on the court undertaking.

"A study is underway of the entire expanse of our relationship, following the prime minister`s statement. And when it is completed it will provide us a variety of suggestions and only then we will consider what it provides us on the expanse of our relations," he said.

The apex court told the envoy Monday that "We don’t accept any assurances by you that you dont intend to leave India. You have lost our trust."

The Italian marines -- Massimiliano Latorre and Salvatore Girone -- killed two fishermen off the Kerala coast in February last year, mistaking them to be pirates.

Italy claims the shooting incident occurred in international waters and wants to get Latorre and Girone tried in its courts.

India says the trial should occur here, and set up a special court in the national capital to try the case.

IANS



First Published: Monday, March 18, 2013 - 20:14

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