High Seas Hit ‘n’ Run – Search is on for merchant vessel that collided with Indian fishing trawler, killing 2

M/V Enrica Lexie embroiled in controversy over the killing of two Indian fisherman that were mistaken for pirates by an Italian Navy security detail.

The search is on for an unidentified merchant ship that collided with an Indian fishing trawler off the coast of Kerala, India, leaving 2 fisherman dead and 3 missing 1 missing.  Hindu times says that two fisherman first reported missing have been found.  A total of 7 were on board at the time of the collision.

Officials say that the fishing trawler capsized and sank quickly after the collision that occurred sometime after midnight local time.  The merchant vessel is reported to have been an oil tanker.

Navy and Coast Guard ships are in search of the merchant vessel and are continuing rescue operations.

“The ship was cruising at a high speed. We tried to alert it several times, but it rammed us badly and sped away,” said one of the survivors, Joseph, to the Hindu Times.

The incident comes after Italian guards on board the Italian-flagged merchant ship Enrica Lexie shot and killed two Indian fisherman off the coast of India.  The guards in that incident are being detained by Indian authorities and could be facing charges of murder despite Italy’s stance that the incident occurred in International waters and does not fall under India’s jurisdiction.