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Italy gets jurisdiction over marines in Indian killing but must pay compensation

AMSTERDAM/ROME — Italy should compensate India for damages incurred by the shooting of two fishermen by Italian marines off the coast of India in 2012, but India has no jurisdiction over the men, the Permanent Court of Arbitration said on Thursday.

The court based in The Hague said it was up to India and Italy to decide the amount of compensation warranted in the so-called Enrica Lexie case, which soured relations between Rome and New Delhi. The two marines were held in custody in India for several years as local prosecutors pressed murder charges.

Salvatore Girone and Massimiliano Latorre were arrested in February 2012 for shooting the two fishermen. They said the killings were accidental, as they mistook the fishermen for pirates and fired warning shots while on duty on the Italian oil tanker “Enrica Lexie” off the southern Indian coast.

Girone and Latorre were later allowed to return home pending the resolution of the dispute between the two states, which was handed over to the Permanent Court of Arbitration based in The Hague.

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