India - San Marco Rgt. Interesting Situation.

Discussion in 'Current Affairs, News and Analysis' started by Tarkwa, Mar 5, 2012.

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  1. Greetings,

    Anyone else following this saga?

    Two Italian Marines detailed to protect a merchant ship have been arrested in India and charged with murder after allegedly killing two fishermen.

    Lots of different angles to this story; jurisdiction, diplomacy, Intl law of the Sea, Indian and Italian criminal law, local and international politics etc. Some serious implications for anyone working in maritime security (not least of all, the two Marines).

    All sorts of perspectives.

    The Indians here: Tehelka - India's Independent Weekly News Magazine (Note how the Marines are described as "armed mercenaries"). They are playing hardball:Gulf Times – Qatar’s top-selling English daily newspaper - India

    The Italians are supporting their men (as so they should) with some pretty high-level emmisaries (Minister for for Foreign Affairs) AFP: Italy sends top diplomat to India in shootings row

    Their Cdr has come out in support: Italian commander defends India shootings soldiers

    The story seems to be monitored here (giving both perspectives) Italy and India Stand Off Over M/V Enrica Lexie Incident [UDPATED] | gCaptain - Maritime & Offshore

    The Marines were experienced blokes (Sgt and Master Chief) from an elite unit, on an official deployment. The exact details seem unclear, but it appears that the Indians pushed their luck a bit to far.

    Let's see how this pans out!
     
  2. Bouillabaisse

    Bouillabaisse LE Book Reviewer

    An interesting standoff. India is determined to exert control over the Indian Ocean and attempting to exert it's jursidiction over events in international waters should be interesting. Meantime these poor buggers are in an Indian jail cell.
     
  3. Not clear where exactly the incident happened. If it was in International waters it's hard to understand what jurisdiction the Indians have.
     
  4. Sounds as though the Indians are getting too big for their chupplies, if the incident occurred at sea in international waters and on board an Italian flagged vessel, then Messers Gupta and Co should leave well alone as it,s sod all to do with them or anybody else other than the Captain of said ship in the first place.
     
  5. Rayc

    Rayc RIP

    The Hindu : News / National : As Italy pushes for
     
  6. Rayc

    Rayc RIP

    I wonder how UK would react if British fishermen were shot and killed in the North Sea in an area not known to have pirates!

    I am sure the British would not be taken to be growing too big for their boots or would they?
     
  7. Sorry Ray but we are constantly being told that very thing, mainly by our rulers in Brussels, hey ho! such a pity the Empire died.
     
  8. Rayc

    Rayc RIP

    The UNCLOS and the 1976 Act establish the following regime for the coastal state’s (here, India’s) jurisdiction:

    Territorial Sea: breadth of of up to a limit not exceeding 12 nautical miles, measured from baselines determined in accordance with the UNCLOS. (Art. 3 UNCLOS) The sovereignty of a coastal State extends, beyond its land territory and internal waters and, in the case of an archipelagic State, its archipelagic waters, to an adjacent belt of sea, described as the territorial sea. (Art. 2 UNCLOS). For our purposes, the 1976 Indian Act in Section 3 provides that ”[t]he sovereignty of India extends and has always extended to the territorial waters of India and to the seabed and subsoil underlying, and the air space over such waters.” Thus, the Indian Penal Code, under which the marines are charged, is an exercise of prescriptive territorial jurisdiction. In other words, India can exercise both prescriptive and enforcement jurisdiction in the territorial sea on the issue of security (taking the killing of fishermen to be this issue).
     
  9. Rayc

    Rayc RIP

    I concede it is a tricky issue, but then it is time to also ensure that jittery people, who are scared of even their shadow, don't go aping the wild west!

    Further, contrary to what a poster (Bouillabaisse) has written, the Marines are not in Jail.

    They are in a Guest House practically as honoured guests and the Kerala Christian Fishermen's Association is up in arms as to why they are being given this VIP treatment when they have killed their folks!
     
  10. Hmm! the whole business reads well, if a tad legalisticaly for most lay persons I would suppose, but it does rather smack of two dogs fighting over a bone, a bone of legalese and of mens rea and mens rosa and all that other mind numbing bullshit, fishermen are dead and it was supposed they were pirates, well thats tragic but then again the Indian Ocean is turning into a tragic expanse of sea and it,s all down to neither India nor in this case Italy, its down to Som bloody malia, so what happens now?.
     
  11. I have to say I tend to go with the Indians on this one; their citizens got shot up offshore and they feel that things should go to court. I mean, the rule of law is supposed to be something we're for, after all. Compared to the shocking state of the Italian judiciary I think you've a better chance of justice in India anyway.

    Now fishermen over here and I suppose in India as well do tend to be quite bloody minded and quite averse to stopping fishing because some random merchant vessel can't be bothered to go round them but that is not a capital offence. If the Italians don't have some fairly compelling video or pictures backing up why they opened fire first then I can't see it ending well for them. Particularly as merchant ships are supposed to avoid fishing boats, not drive straight at them then brass them up.
     
    • Like Like x 2
  12. Two stubborn, unarmed Indian fishermen shot dead by Italian Servicemen aboard a civilian vessel in Indian waters. Italian servicemen in Indian custody pending investigation, what's wrong with that?
    The Indian criminal justice system is pretty fair and above board - seems to me it's the Italians trying to put on a political dog and pony show - enlisting the aid of the Vatican! For what? Is the Pope going to pole up to the Court in his best SD and give the Eytie booties a character report?

    It'll all come out in the dhobi.
     
  13. The shooters clearly failed to follow the RUF and killed two innocent fishermen so they should be held accountable. Skiffs will frequently 'buzz' a larger vessel if the latter is about to steam through their nets. The marines clearly didn't identify a weapon or fire warning shots before engaging so were most likely either: a) not properly trained (unlikely), b) acting like cowboys, or c) hadn't been keeping a proper watch and responded too hastily to a panicking crew. With only a two man team onboard my money would be on 'c'.
     
  14. Has it been established where the killings happened?
    Has it been established that warnings were issued?
    Has it been established that the "fishermen" were indeed unarmed?
    Is this coastal region of India inhabited by Muslims?

    Quite a few assumptions being made before the facts are known.