Italy is committed to helping Mali develop and views it as a key partner in stemming migration and combatting terrorism in the Sahel region, foreign minister Luigi Di Maio told the country's humanitarian aid minister Oumarou Diarra during talks at the foreign ministry in Rome.
"Di Maio stressed Italy’s commitment to the country and the Sahel region of the Sahel, also in terms of Italy’s multilateral agenda for its G20 Presidency this year," said a foreign ministry statement.
The Italy's embassy in Bamako's recent opening and its "commitment on a humanitarian and development level, cooperation on the question of migration, and the growing contribution to combating terrorism" were also cited by Di Maio during the talks, the statement said.
Di Maio, whose first overseas visit as foreign minister was to Mali, also noted Italy's participation in the French-led Takuba military task force.
Di Maio also underlined Italy's "coordinated action with major partners in Europe and in the Coalition for the Sahel and the recent appointment of former deputy foreign minister Emanuela Del Re as the new European Union special representative for the Sahel, said the statement.
"The discussions also centred on the political situation in Mali following the military coups in May, and the importance of an integrated, multi-dimensional approach to security, aimed at creating the conditions for inclusive stability in a key country for the stability of the Sahel," it said.