New Delhi: 7.00 pm: Italian ambassador Daniele Mancini was summoned again on Thursday evening over the marines issue. The meeting lasts over 40 minutes.
5:09 pm: India seeks EU's support in the Italian marines issue, say sources.
4:10 pm: The MEA spokesperson said that India will take further action in the marines' case after taking into account its ties with Italy. "We will take further action that is appropriate taking into account all aspects of our relationship with Italy. As part of our ongoing efforts, stemming from PM's remarks in Parliament, we have initiated a study of our interactions with Italy. At the end of that internal process, we will take appropriate action," Syed Akbaruddin said.
4:05 pm: The Ministry of External Affairs said it expected Italy to abide by the agreement made by its ambassador. MEA spokesperson, Syed Akbaruddin said, "The first step in terms of international public law is that agreements are to be respected. We expect Italy to respect the agreement."
3:05 pm: Janata Party President Subramanian Swamy, who filed a plea against the Italian ambassador in the Supreme Court, said, "The court has directed that the ambassador cannot leave the country. It sends a strong message becasue the confidence of the people was shaken after they insulted us by keeping the marines there."
1:46 pm: The Bharatiya Janata Party asked the government as to what actions it was planning against Italy in the marines row. "We are waiting for severe 'consequences' that PM promised. A private citizen has now ensured that justice is done. The person has got a notice against the Italian ambassador," BJP leader Rajiv Pratap Rudy said.
1:13 pm: External Affairs Minister Salman Khurshid has said, "We will comply with the Supreme Court order restraining
the Italian Ambassador from leaving the country."
12:26 pm: Sources in the Italian government say that the marines do not face any charges in India and the charges were quashed by the Kerala High Court. Sources say that the Supreme court had left open the option for Italy to challenge jurisdiction in a special court. Sources add that India has ignored the apex court's advice to explore a settlement with Italy.
11:20 am: The court has sought an explanation from the ambassador on Italian government's decision of going back on its assurance to send back the marines to face trial in India. However, it is not essential for Mancini to appear before court personally.
But what may be pointed out is that the Supreme Court's deadline to the Italian marines to return is March 22 and any action against the ambassador can be taken only after they fail to return by that date.
11:16 am: The court has asked Mancini to respond to the notice by March 18. The next date of hearing in the case against the Italian ambassador is March 19.
11:11 am: The Supreme Court's notice to Mancini came after Janata Party President Subramanian Swamy filed a plea seeking action against the Italian ambassador for contempt of court.
11:07 am: External Affairs Minister Salman Khurshid said, "A-G will explain our position in court and the developments that have taken place. The feelings of our people will be kept foremost. What PM has said is important. We leave it to the court to pronounce whether we are on sound legal footing."
11:00 am: The Supreme Court has issued a notice to Italian ambassador Daniele Mancini restraining him from leaving India. The apex court's notice is based on the Attorney General's response.
10:30 am: Sources say Prime Minister Manmohan Singh is consulting Law Minister Ashwani Kumar over India's options in the Italian marines' case. Source say senior ministers are of the opinion that this is more a legal fight than a diplomatic stand off as claimed by the Italians. Sources say the government is considering approaching the international court of justice, but no decision has been finalised.
10:08 am: A day after sending out a stern warning to Italy, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh met External Affairs Minister Salman Khurshid on Thursday and reports indicate that the issue of the Italian marines was being discussed. This could include what punitive actions need to be taken in the stand off with Italy.
Italy has warned India to go to court in the case. Italy has insisted it is on solid legal ground in seeking international arbitration in the case. Italian Foreign Minister Giulio Terzi told reporters in Israel, "We have juridically solid reasons to proceed in the direction of international arbitration The Indian government is amply apprised of all it needs to know about our reasons, as do many of our partners."
Meanwhile, there are reports of differences within the government over Italian ambassador to India Daniele Mancini's diplomatic immunity. While the Home Ministry has asked the External Affairs Ministry to ensure the ambassador is not able to invoke his diplomatic immunity, the MEA has cited the Vienna convention to say doing so would affect Indian diplomats abroad.
Sources had earlier indicated that the Italian Ambassador may be asked to leave. The Italian ambassador to India, Daniele Mancini, has, however, said that he will not leave India until he is made persona non grata, meaning an unwelcome person, over the Italian marines row.
"I will not leave this country till a competent authority makes me persona non grata.. I am more than glad to live in this country for years to come," he told reporters on the sidelines of a function when asked whether he was afraid that he may be asked to leave the country.
Italy has insisted it is on solid legal ground in seeking international arbitration in the case. Italian Foreign Minister Giulio Terzi told reporters in Israel, "We have juridically solid reasons to proceed in the direction of international arbitration The Indian government is amply apprised of all it needs to know about our reasons, as do many of our partners."
There was ruckus in Parliament over the issue on Wednesday with the BJP claiming collusion between New Delhi and Rome. Following this, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh did speak tough, warning Italy of grave consequences if the marines were not sent back for trial in the Indian fishermen killings case. "They have violated every rule of diplomatic discourse and call into question solemn commitments given by an accredited representative of a government," Singh said in the Lok Sabha which witnessed uproar during Question Hour as well as Zero Hour over the issue.
Kerala Chief Minister Oommen Chandy also met the Prime Minister and discussed the issue on Wednesday. After the meeting Chandy said the marines will have to come back to India to face trial in the Kerala fishermen murder case.
The Supreme Court had given them permission to stay out of the country only till March 22. The two marines are facing trial for killing two fishermen off the Kerala coast in February 2012, mistaking them for pirates.