Mme Catherine Colonna, Minister for Europe and Foreign Affairs, visited Rome on 25 May on the invitation of her Italian counterpart, Deputy Prime Minister Antonio Tajani.
The very cordial meeting, which followed on from the recent talks between President Macron and the Italian Prime Minister in Reykjavik and Hiroshima, confirmed how important Franco-Italian cooperation is in tackling the challenges our two countries face.
The Minister reaffirmed France’s solidarity with Italy in the face of the deadly floods that have hit Emilia-Romagna: 43 French civil protection staff and a pumping unit have been in place in Ravenna since 24 May.
In the face of the Russian aggression of which it is the victim, the ministers reaffirmed their common support for Ukraine, including militarily, and in this regard they emphasized their desire to strengthen Europe’s defence capabilities. They also discussed preparations for the forthcoming NATO summit in Vilnius on 11 and 12 July and the complementarity between the Atlantic Alliance and the European Union’s contribution to the continent’s security.
In view of the migration challenge Italy is facing as a country of first entry, the two ministers agreed to step up their cooperation bilaterally and at European level, in particular in the framework of negotiations on the [New] Pact on Migration and Asylum and in their relations with Tunisia.
They also called for increased European engagement in Africa in the political, economic and security fields. Lastly, they reaffirmed their full support for the efforts of the Special Representative of the United Nations Secretary-General for Libya.
The two countries will continue the work begun on all these issues and on bilateral questions, under the mechanisms provided for in the Quirinal Treaty. The ministers agreed to meet again in Paris very soon.