(ANSA) - Rome, March 18 - Italy's foreign minister on
Tuesday said "international arbitration could be the next step"
in the country's efforts to bring home two anti-piracy marines
held in India for two years without charges for allegedly
killing two fishermen.
"We'll discuss it with them and their lawyers," Federica
Mogherini told a joint session of the parliamentary
Lately Italy has been trying to rally international support
among the EU, the US, NATO and the UN to bring home Massimiliano
Latorre and Salvatore Girone, who have been held in New Delhi
since February 2012, after they allegedly opened fire on a
fishing trawler they mistook for a pirate vessel.
The ongoing case has seriously strained Indian-Italian
relations, especially before prosecutors ruled out the death
penalty as a possible sentence earlier this year.
They now face up to 10 years in prison, prosecutors say.
Italy argues that the case sets dangerous and wide-ranging
precedents for any country involved in anti-piracy missions
The incident occurred while the marines were guarding the
privately owned Italian-flagged oil-tanker MT Enrica Lexie off
the coast of the southern Indian state of Kerala in February
The pair have been living and working at the Italian
embassy in India amid a long series of delays in the case.