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Peacekeeping contribution fundamental, says De Mistura

“Italy’s participation in peacekeeping operations remains fundamental. The alternative would be highly serious. We would lose our ability to influence what are fundamental operations in areas often neighbouring on Italy”. This was the comment by Under-Secretary De Mistura in a video interview at the conference on Italy’s role in international missions organized by the International Affairs Institute and the Institute for International Policy Studies, underscoring that Italy should not cut back on its presence in international missions.

Excellence of Italian military

Moreover, the Under-Secretary recalled changes over past decades in strategy and approach involving the roles of the UN and NATO. Organisations in which “the Italian military have made a truly excellent contribution, and whose professional skill has improved enormously along with an ability to communicate linguistically that equals or surpasses that of many other nations. They are amply equipped for today’s multifaceted and asymmetrical wars and to maintain contact with the local populations”, he added.

In that sense, according to De Mistura, “we must accelerate our redeployment in order to be ready elsewhere” in Afghanistan. The Under-Secretary pointed out that “just as the French have done, we have been consistent for 12 years now but, at the same time, one must not remain too long when the Afghans are asking us to leave and have shown that, despite the fact that the country is not perfect, they can manage internal peacekeeping operations very well on their own”.