"The Italian G7 Presidency follows that of Japan in a prospect of continuity. Our programme has placed citizens and their needs in terms of social, economic, environmental well-being and security at the centre of the agenda and of the political action of our Presidency," said the Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, Angelino Alfano, to his Japanese counterpart, Fumio Kishida, during a bilateral meeting the two ministers held in Lucca on the sidelines of the G7 Foreign Ministers' Meeting.
"Sant'Anna di Stazzema and Hiroshima are symbols tied to the tragic history of World War II," Minister Alfano underlined, while giving thanks to the tribute paid earlier by the Japanese Ambassador at the National Peace Park.
Regarding bilateral relations, the Minister of Foreign Affairs said: "We are committed to strengthening our economic and commercial partnership with Tokyo within the framework of the relations between Japan and the European Union and believing that the promotion of a free market is necessary. We wish for Japanese investments in Italy to grow and for cooperation in the most promising fields to deepen, including in the defence sector.
"The two ministers also talked about international and regional security issues, with special attention to the North Korean threat and tension in the Chinese Seas for which Tokyo calls for the G7 to be the custodian of an international order. "The international community should unite to exert a strong pressure on North Korea to bring about a change in attitude in Pyonyang," stated Minister Alfano. He also assured his Japanese counterpart that "Italy, together with the EU, will continue to follow closely the unfolding of the situation in the East and South Chinese Seas and its impact on global trade, security and stability.
"As to the crisis in Syria, Alfano and Kishida agreed on the need to engage Russia in an effort to overcome the conflict.