Italy - Recalling of the ambassador of France for consultations (7 February 2019)

France and Italy are united by a common history; they share a destiny. They built Europe together and worked to achieve peace. France is deeply attached to this strong friendship which fosters cooperation in all areas and closeness between our peoples. The French-Italian friendship is more essential than ever in order to address the challenges we face in the 21st century.

For several months now, France has - as everyone knows or may be aware of - been the target of repeated accusations, baseless attacks and outrageous remarks. These attacks are unprecedented since the end of World War II. Having disagreements is one thing; using the relationship for election purposes is another.

The most recent intrusions constitute a further, unacceptable provocation. They show a lack of respect for democratic choice by a nation that is our friend and ally. They show a lack of respect between democratically and freely elected governments.

The European election campaign is no justification for a lack of respect toward any nation or its democracy.

All these actions help create a serious situation, which raises questions about the intentions of the Italian government with respect to its relationship with France.

In light of this unprecedented situation, the French government has decided to recall the ambassador of France to Italy for consultations.

France calls on Italy to take action to restore the relationship based on friendship and mutual respect that measures up to our history and our common destiny.