Italy's premier Giuseppe Conte on Monday blasted Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdogan's remarks questioning his French counterpart Emmanuel Macron's mental health after Macron vowed to defend secular values and fight radical Islam.
"President Erdogan's words to President Macron are unacceptable," Conte tweeted.
"Such tirades do not favour the positive agenda that the European Union wants to have with Turkey but on the contrary make solutions harder to attain," read the tweet, referencing Turkey's EU membership bid.
France has recalled its ambassador to Turkey for consultations after Erdogan insulted Macron on Saturday. "What's the problem of the individual called Macron with Islam and with the Muslims?" Erdogan asked in a speech. "Macron needs treatment on a mental level," he added.
Macron has spoken out forcefully on these issues after a French school teacher was beheaded near Paris on 16 October for showing cartoons of the Prophet Muhammad in class. Macron's campaign to defend France's secular values began before the teacher was murdered.