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Italy steps up pressure on Delhi

Italy is stepping up its demarche that the two Italian Marines should be allowed to leave India. The deputy foreign minister Staffan De Mistura has arrived in Delhi to raise the matter at the political level. Foreign Minister Giulio Terzi is expected in Delhi early next week. 

The Italians are firmly insisting that the crime of the killing of the two Indian fishermen took place in international waters and the UN regulations on the law of the sea will prevail, which means trial in Italy. They refuse to accept Delhi’s stance that Indian laws will prevail. 
It stands to reason the Italians are in possession of evidence backing up their case — or else the foreign minister wouldn’t stake his political prestige in the matter. If so, a first class diplomatic row is erupting and the denouement may not be pleasant. 
The big question is whether the way South Block went about handling this issue was the best way or the only way. EAM S.M.Krishna has said, “the law of the land will have to take its own course, we have advised the Italians to cooperate with the Kerala law agencies to achieve an amicable solution.” This is a contradictory stance. An “amicable solution” implies a negotiated, mutually acceptable, equitable solution. Whereas, ‘due process of law’ is an entirely different process, which is non-negotiable. 
The accent of the Kerala chief minister Oommen Chandy is on “strict legal action” on the “cold-blooded murder”, which is a third way. Interestingly, following his phone conversation with EAM Krishna on Monday, Terzi linked the Indian stance to the Piravom by-election to the Kerala state assembly on March 18, which could seal the fate of the Congress-led government. Tersi observed wryly, “Complicating an already complex situation are the elections being held in Kerala that are without doubt influencing the feelings of the citizens and as a consequence risk influencing the investigation.” 

Posted in Diplomacy.

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6 Responses

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  1. forcek says

    First and foremost, India should aggresively develop economic relations with middle east but make it abundantly clear to all and sundry that they would not wash their dirty linen on Indian streets. We have nothing to do with hezbollah or any tom dick and harry. Iranian radicals have no business in carrying out terrorist activities on Indian soil. This message should go to all ‘non-sub-continent’ foreign nationals to strictly ‘behave’ according to Indian law, just as we Indians adher to their laws when we travel to their countries.

    In this context external affairs ministry and whole bunch of diplomats should drive the point that in Indian foreign policy, economics and politics are firmly divided. And we should show it in actions. “Give a tight slap for misbehaviour and offer them a lucrative business offer wherever admissible”. Is it very difficult ? I mean hello…. i think civil servants are taught all these….and even if they are not taught then commonsense dictates that you go back to your basic human nature and assess situations.

  2. forcek says

    what beats me is the evidence that we gathered before Italy stepped in with its might. If coast gaurd or Indian police have better evidence of the area of crime then we can equally argue with Italians that they are over-indulging in a matter of India’s sovereignity.

    But problem with maritime boundaries is that the person with more international clout and loud mouth wins the day, since martime boundaries cannot be exactly demarcated. We have seen this issue many times in past, first a phony vietnamese ship firing at a Us battleship, that sparked off Vietnam war…or as lately as a confrontation between iran and coalition vessels.

    In this case, we are also on a diplomatic backfoot vis-a-vis western powers. US has openly expressed its displeasure at India’s stance on Iran. Israel, which has been openly backing India too received lukewarm response from Indian establishment on recent shootings, not to say the investigations going nowhere. Apart from that, we have turned down Eurofighter thereby antagonizing some european powers too. All in all, its not a rosy picture. What’s worse is our thrown back relations with Russia which would have given us some sort of quarreling power in minor nuisances.

    I hope the slumbering Indian diplomatic community keep its academic achievements in safe deposit and dust its commensense and act fast.

  3. srnvs san says

    Italy is on the verge of going bankrupt. I read this headlines as Manio step up pressure on Delhi.
    Watch my words, Italians will be released due to pressure from Manio madam

  4. tomcat2011 says

    This is the biggest problem. The governments don’t care two hoots about losing two poor fishermen. Shame Shame Shame

  5. guest says

    Sonia is from Italy – Italy will be ready to give 1 lakh per fisherman and settle this outside the court and leave. We are toothless and SM Krishna can’t do much here as he wants to complete his term.

  6. sunil sirohi says

    -all will be released.
    -after all we have a mafiaso at the helm !!

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