The minister’s comment to La Repubblica comes a day after Italy closed down its embassy in Libya citing security concerns. The recent IS advances in the country, separated from Italy by a narrow sea passage, have prompted thousands of North African migrants to rush to the Italian coast.
"We must not lose a minute, we have to send a UN mission to Libya, the international community must understand that it is crucial for the future of the West," Alfano said.
In early February, Islamic State militants claimed responsibility for several attacks on Libyan territory. In recent weeks, the extremists reportedly took over a Libyan state-run television station in Sirte, as well as two radio stations.
On Sunday, the radical Sunni group posted a footage depicting the brutal beheadings of 21 Egyptian Coptic Christians who had been abducted earlier in Sirte.