President Erdoğan holds phone call with Italy’s premier
President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan held a phone call on Sept. 8 with the Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi, saying Turkey expects Italy, a NATO ally, to respond appropriately to the importance Turkey attaches to relations.
The Turkish Communications Directorate stated that bilateral relations and regional issues were discussed at the meeting held at Mario Draghi’s request.
Erdoğan stressed that he believes Italy’s principled support for the development of Turkey-EU relations and the membership process will continue strongly, adding that it was in everyone’s interest to start negotiations on the update of the Customs Union as soon as possible, without any preconditions.
The bilateral trade volume between Turkey and Italy in the first seven months of 2021 approached $13 billion and exceeded the level before the coronavirus pandemic, Erdoğan said, adding that if they accelerate this momentum, they could easily reach the $30 billion target.
Stating that they support the timely elections in Libya, Erdoğan underlined that Turkey provides training and consultancy to the legitimate security forces upon Libya’s request and based on bilateral agreements.
As the Taliban have taken the control of Afghanistan, a new situation has emerged in the field and that engagement with the group should be continued at the point of delivering humanitarian aid, he said, noting that otherwise, the pressure on migration, which has already reached high levels, would increase even more.
For his part, Draghi invited Erdoğan to the G20 Leaders’ Summit to be held in Rome in October, which will be chaired by Italy.