"Over the past years, Russia has been convincing in proving its role of the forefront international player in the ‘Greater Mediterranean’ area. Not a single significant or important decision on Syria, Libya or other issues related to peace and well-being of the region, can be made without Russia," Castaldo, who is a member of the Italian 5 Star Movement, which is part of the ruling coalition, said on the sidelines of the Mediterranean Dialogues (MED) forum in Rome.
The politician expressed confidence that the development of EU-Russian relations was important for future progress in various areas, including security. The participation of Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov in the MED conference makes a big difference for achieving the balance of powers in the region, according to the Italian politician.
Castaldo also underlined that Lavrov’s current visit to Rome showed the strength of friendly ties between Rome and Moscow.
During his trip to Italy, the Russian top diplomat held talks with Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte on Thursday. The foreign minister is also expected to meet with his Italian counterpart Enzo Moavero Milanesi on Friday. Castaldo recalled that the recent visit of Conte to Moscow for negotiations with Russian President Vladimir Putin further helped strengthen bilateral ties.
The fourth edition of the MED forum is held in Rome between Thursday and Saturday. Russia has been an active player in the settlement of the Syrian conflict. It is one of the ceasefire guarantor states, alongside Iran and Turkey. Moreover, it has been supporting Damascus in its fight against terrorism. Moscow has also been backing the peace process in Libya.