India revokes Italian ambassador's diplomatic immunity

Featured India - March 18th, 2013
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India’s top court ruled that the Italian ambassador no longer has diplomatic immunity, in another escalation in the row between Rome and New Delhi over the killings of two Indian fishermen.

Chief Justice Altamas Kabir said Daniele Mancini had waived his immunity, willingly submitting himself to the jurisdiction of the Supreme Court by signing a personal affidavit guaranteeing the return of two Italian marines who fired the shots that killed the fishermen, reports AFP.

A panel of Supreme Court judges, led by Kabir, dismissed arguments by Mancini’s lawyers that the top court’s order to remain in India was a breach of his diplomatic immunity.

“A person who comes to court and gives and undertaking has no immunity,” Kabir told a hearing into the case.

“We have lost all trust in the ambassador,” he added.

The Indian government has warned that the ambassador could face contempt charges if the two marines are not returned for trial by Friday, AFP reports.

Rome reneged on its promise to send back the two marines, arguing that the shooting happened in international waters which India has no jurisdiction over.