Italy must further strengthen relations with its ally the United States during the COVID-19 pandemic, foreign minister Luigi Di Maio stated on Tuesday after talks with US counterpart Antony Blinken on the sidelines of a Nato summit in Brussels.
"Ahead of the Nato foreign ministers meeting in Brussels, I had talks with US secretary of state Antony Blinken," Di Maio wrote on social media.
"It was a timely opportunity to underline the strong bond between the US and Italy, which needs bolstering ever-further, especially in view of the pandemic that is battering our countries," the tweet went on.
Italy and the US will continue to cooperate on the main international flashpoint issues including Libya, Di Maio wrote.
"We will tackle the many challenges that face us," the tweet added.
"Italy is a key ally and friend to the United States as we confront global challenges," Blinken tweeted after his talks with Di Maio.
At the Nato summit on Tuesday and Wednesday, foreign ministers are due to discuss reforms to the transatlantic alliance as well as concerns over China and Russia, climate change, cyber and energy security and other issues.
The future of Nato's 9,600-strong mission in Afghanistan is high on the meeting agenda, after former US president Donald Trump struck a deal with the Taliban to withdraw troops by 1 May.