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UNGA – Alfano attends ministerial meeting on Syria

On the sidelines of the 72nd Session of the United Nations General Assembly, upon the invitation of U.S. Secretary of State, Rex Tillerson, the Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Coordination, Angelino Alfano, is attending the ministerial meeting of “like-minded” Countries to discuss the situation in Syria.

The meeting, which is a follow-up of the preceding ministerial meeting held in Lucca under the Italian presidency of the G7, in addition to the habitual Countries (USA, UK, France, Germany, Italy, Saudi Arabia, Jordan, EAU, Qatar, Turkey), has been extended for the first time to Egypt, Canada and the Netherlands.

“The situation in Syria has witnessed a rather dramatic evolution since our meeting in Lucca,” said Minister Alfano at the start of his address. He went on: “Italy has favourably received news of the establishment of ‘de-escalation’ zones but we must make sure that these areas do not end up bringing about a de facto division of the Country.”  

Mr Alfano emphasised that “to solve the Syrian crisis, it is crucial to continue supporting the efforts of the United Nations Special Envoy, Staffan de Mistura, which aim to facilitate effective dialogue among the Syrian parties,” and concluded: “Only a genuinely political transition can lead to a stable and enduring solution.”

The Italian Foreign Minister concluded by recalling the joint Italian-U.S. initiative to convene a technical and informal meeting in Rome next 27 and 28 September, with the aim of fostering dialogue between different Syrian players in order to mitigate inter-ethnic tensions and successfully pacify the Country.