Italy's "strong" partnership with the US and their shared commitment to multilateralism "has never been more important" in tackling "unprecedented global challenges" like the Coronavirus pandemic and climate change, foreign minister Luigi Di Maio and US counterpart Antony Blinken wrote Friday in a statement marking the 160th anniversary of bilateral diplomatic ties.
"During this time of unprecedented global challenges – ranging from the COVID-19 pandemic, to climate change; from authoritarianism, to economic and technological disruptions – the strong US -Italy partnership has never been more important," Di Maio and Blinken wrote.
The statement was published in Italian daily La Repubblica and written in the form of a letter addressed to the paper's editor.
"We share the same goals on the issues that are at the heart of the Italian Presidency of the G20 and of the upcoming UN Framework Convention on Climate Change COP 26," the letter continued.
"2021 will be crucial to finally turn the page on the pandemic and to trigger a much needed paradigm shift in how we confront the joint challenges of climate change and economic recovery."
Di Maio and Blinken called for new impetus to be given to transatlantic relations and for cooperation between the US and the European Union to be strengthened "across the board".
"Italy and the United States will work together and with our partners in all relevant multilateral fora to increase global access to vaccines, raise climate ambition, and kick-start the post-pandemic recovery along a path of environmental and social sustainability," the letter stated.
Italy and the US both have a "steadfast" commitment to NATO to ensure security, Di Maio and Blinken wrote.
"Stability in the broader Mediterranean, extending from Afghanistan to the Sahel, is a primary focus of our cooperation. We support the Libyan people and institutions in their path towards free and fair elections and a sustainable political solution to the crisis within the UN framework. We are on the frontline in fighting terrorism through the Global Coalition to Defeat ISIS."
"In Afghanistan, Italian and American troops have stood shoulder to shoulder for the last 20 years – and we will not allow terrorists to use Afghan soil to threaten our and our allies’ security," the letter went on.
"We are working to advance solutions for the crises in Yemen, Syria, Iran, Burma, the Sahel and the Horn of Africa," the letter added.
A commitment to multilateralism is "central" to Italy and the US's foreign policies, noted the letter, which also underlined the US's return to the UN Human Rights Council.
"To this end, we intend to strengthen further our cooperation in the field of human rights," the letter stressed.
"We mark the 160th anniversary of our diplomatic relations with the commitment to further strengthen our partnership, and to continue working together to advance respect for human rights, peace and security worldwide," the letter concluded.