Italy's government "appreciates and thanks" the United Nations envoy to Syria Geir Pedersen for the launch of Syria's long-awaited constitutional committee, Luigi Di Maio told Pedersen on Thursday.
Di Maio thanked Pedersen for his role in bringing together rival sides in Syria's long-running war at a meeting with the envoy at the foreign ministry in Rome, he said at a joint press conference after their meeting.
"Italy supports the passionate commitment" shown by Pedersen from his appointment (in January) to the Syrian constitutional committee's first meeting in Geneva on 30 October," said Di Maio.
Italy also shares Pedersen's conviction that "the goal is lasting peace which cannot be achieved through military force," he said.
This goal can only be attained "through major diplomatic efforts", Di Maio argued.
A road-map for this political process leading to UN-supervised elections is UN resolution 2254, Di Maio underlined.