The Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, Angelino Alfano, held a telephone conversation today with his counterpart, the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Bahrain, Sheik Khalid Bin Ahmad Al Khalifa.
During a cordial telephone conversation, the two ministers discussed above all the current diplomatic crisis in the Gulf. Minister Alfano talked about the conversations he had with the region's main players - the foreign ministers of Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Kuwait and Qatar. Alfano underscored that Italy is concerned over the humanitarian impact the crisis may have and told his interlocutor that Italy expects the parties involved to work to de-escalate tensions and start a constructive and open debate on the origin of these differences. This is to get to a negotiated and sustainable solution as soon as possible, while promptly re-establishing cooperation between the members of the Gulf Cooperation Council.
"The debate, which has been triggered by the current crisis, can be an opportunity to relaunch the central role of countering terrorism and its financing," said Alfano. He also underlined that "fighting terrorism is a priority for Italy and demands a united front of the international community.
"During their telephone conversation, Minister Alfano and Sheik Al Khalifa discussed trade cooperation projects. Alfano also confirmed that Italy is interested in further strengthening its already excellent bilateral relations with Bahrain.
At the end of the telephone conversation, Al Khalifa accepted Alfano's invitation to attend the 2017 MED Dialogue Conference (30 November- 2 December). "Your participation in the Rome MED Dialogues will offer a special added value to the discussions on an enlarged Mediterranean," said Minister Alfano.