Two fishermen shot dead by guards
Thiruvananthapuram: Taking a strong stand on two Indian fishermen being shot at and killed by the security personnel of Italian ship Enrica Lexie on Wednesday night, the Ministry of External Affairs on Thursday summoned Italian Ambassador Giacomo Sanfelice di Monteforte and registered a strong protest.
Ministry of External Affairs officials said that tell 11 fishermen were on the boat, when the Italian ship came close to them. While nine of those on board were sleeping, two were awake. These two fishermen – Ajesh Binki (25) and Jalastein (45) – were killed when the guards of Enrica Lexie opened fire off the coast of Kerala on Wednesday night.
The Directorate General of Shipping said that the Italian ship was carrying six armed guards and an enquiry has been ordered into the tragic incident.
“It has been reported to this Directorate that the Italian flagged MV Enrica Lexie, resorted to firing on an Indian fishing vessel in position 09 20N 075 52E (heading 345 speed 14 kts) at 1700 Hrs on 15th February 2012. The vessel MV Enrica Lexie is carrying six Italian armed guards. The firing has reportedly resulted in the death of two Indian fishermen. The vessel was bound from Singapore to Egypt with a crew of 19 Indians. The Coast Guard intercepted the vessel and escorted her to Kochi for investigation. The vessel has anchored at Kochi on 15th February 2012 at 2300hrs (IST). The Principal Officer, MMD Kochi has been directed to conduct the preliminary inquiry into this incident resulting in the loss of life of two innocent Indian fishermen,” the Directorate said in a press release.
Story courtesy of IBN Live.
One Reply to “Two fishermen shot dead by guards”
I am a Tanker Capt and for the last 8 years have been on the PG far east Trade . The area in question off the kerela coast has a lot of fishing vessels , which often pass close to large commercial vessels and are so busy with their fishing related activities that the do not follow the steering rules. While this is often annoying and inconvinent for large vessels, it is not a excuse for shooting at people . If vessels under my command had followed the same rules as the Lexie we would now have been guilty of a few hundred deaths. It sounds to my mind that the guards were not familar with the area and normal fishing vessel behaviour i wonder if the Master of the Tanker was in the loop when the order to fire was given .
This has all the makings of a international Incident , the incident has taken place just outside indian waters but in the EEZ so the flag state should have jurisdiction however as 2 indian nationals have been killed india will assert jurisdiction . It is also the most convinent forum . Having seen the italian govt statements it is quite clear that a fair trial cannot be held in Italy as without any investigation they have already exonerated the Guards .
Being a fellow Mariner and Tanker Capt who has been attacked by Pirates twice normally my sympathies would e with the Ship however in this instance it appears that a tragic mistake as been committed .If this leads to some action on the Piracy front some good may come of it Yet . This was something just waiting to happen , on at least 2 occasions i have personnaly heard radio messages reporting pirate attack which later turned out to be False alarms .