Rome

Costa Concordia captain says owed apology

Not 'captain coward', Schettino tells daily

Costa Concordia captain says owed apology

Rome, November 16 - The captain of Italia cruise liner Costa Concordia that hit a Tuscan island in January killing 32 people on Friday said he expected an apology from all those who called him 'captain coward' for abandoning ship. "All I read about me are indecent falsehoods," Francesco Schettino told Il Giornale daily. "There is evidence that tells a completely different story...they want to make me out as a coward but that's not so. I didn't abandon ship". Schettino, who is facing a possible indictment for multiple manslaughter, claimed he had saved "dozens" of lives through a last-minute manoeuvre that made the impact on the rocks of Giglio Island less strong than it would otherwise have been. He said he was writing a book that would give the lie to several headline-grabbing elements of the story, including a taped conversation in which he was urged to "get back on board, dammit".

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