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Italian Marines: The Hague Court of Arbitration’s rules on Girone’s return to Italy

With reference to what has been reported by the news agency ANSA, the Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation announces that the Court of Arbitration based in The Hague anticipated its decision on Monday that the Italian Navy marine, Salvatore Girone, will return to Italy until the arbitration process, that began in June 2015, is concluded. The terms for the marine’s return will be subject to agreements between Italy and India.

The government undertook to submit the entire issue to the International Court of Arbitration so that the marines could return home. This ruling appears to pave the way to the achievement of this goal.

It is, in fact, good news for the two marines, for their families and for the case argued by the Italian government and its legal counsels. The Italian government expects India to take a constructive attitude, also in the subsequent phases, including with regard to the jurisdiction of the dispute.

The ruling of the Court in The Hague has taken into account the legal and humanitarian considerations related to Girone having spent over four years in India, which could have been extended for another two or three years, considering the time required for the arbitration procedure.

The Italian government will immediately begin negotiations with India in order to define and agree as soon as possible the conditions complying with the arbitration court’s ruling.

The Italian government reiterates that today’s ruling, with reference to the measures requested by Italy regarding Sergent Girone, will not affect the continuation of the arbitration procedures, which are expected to define whether the jurisdiction over the Enrica Lexie dispute lies with India or Italy.

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