Rome, June 8 (IANS) The two Italian marines held in India are being detained “unjustly”, Italian President Giorgio Napolitano said Friday.
Massimiliano Latorre and Salvatore Girone have been charged with shooting two Indian fishermen in February when they were guarding an Italian tanker from pirates off the Kerala coast. The two marines said they mistook an Indian fishing vessel for pirates.
Italy said the incident happened in international waters while India maintains the shooting occurred in its own territory.
Latorre and Girone are “unjustly held far from Italy and their families”, the AKI news agency quoted Napolitano as saying in a message to the Italian Navy chief on the 151st anniversary of its founding.
Two Indian fishermen — Ajesh Binki, 25, and Gelastine, 45 — were allegedly mistaken as pirates and shot dead off Alappuzha in Kerala by the marines, who were serving as the security crew on the Italian cargo vessel Enrica Lexie.
Latorre and Girone have been granted bail but asked to surrender their passports and not to leave the area.