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Refusal to send back Italian marines a BETRAYAL: BJP

March 12, 2013 13:51 IST

The Bharatiya Janata Party on Tuesday termed as "betrayal and bluff" the Italian government's refusal to send back two marines, who had been charged with shooting dead two Indian fishermen, and demanded that all efforts should be made to bring them back to face trial in the case.

"This is betrayal and bluff by the Italian government. It is a breach of trust between two sovereign nations and the act is completely unacceptable. The Indian government should take every step to retrieve the fugitives immediately and conduct a trial under Indian laws and in Indian courts," said BJP spokesperson Rajiv Pratap Rudy.

He said the BJP will seek an explanation from the government as to why the Italian government is so 'casual' about India.

"We have witnessed the same in the (prime accused in Bofors scandal) Ottavio Quattrochi case and now (we see) a similar action, where the Italian government has virtually challenged India's highest court," he said.

The two marines -- Massimiliano Lattore and Salvatore Girone -- have been charged with shooting dead two fishermen off the Kerala coast in February.

The marines were permitted by the Supreme Court to go to Italy for four weeks for voting in February's election. Earlier, they had been allowed to go home for the Christmas holidays, after which they returned to India on the expiry of their leave.

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