"Russia's role in Syria should be constructive and can be decisive," Gentiloni said at a joint press conference with UN Special Envoy for Syria Staffan de Mistura.
The minister stressed that Italy expected that Russia will be able to contribute to the transition process in Syria, which is necessary for the political solution to the crisis.
Syria has been mired in civil war since 2011, with government forces loyal to President Bashar Assad fighting a number of opposition factions and extremists. A Russia-US-brokered ceasefire came into effect in Syria in February. Extremist groups operating in the country are not part of the cessation of hostilities.