Civil society key to Mediterranean stability: Italy

     Written by : IANS | Wed, Nov 22, 2017, 11:43 PM

The Italian government is listening to youth, women and the business community

Rome, Nov 22 :The Italian government is listening to youth, women and the business community ahead of the Forum MED - Mediterranean Dialogues summit taking place in Rome next week, Foreign Minister Angelino Alfano said on Wednesday.

He also said that now more than ever, dialogue is needed to resolve the various crises in the Mediterranean region.

"There are preparatory meetings on young people, women, business, overseas aid, religion, sport, media... all help set the agenda for the Mediterranean.

"They create a kind of community made up of leaders and experts from civil society who discuss and reflect on the opportunities in the wider Mediterranean area," said Alfano, adding that the Italian Foreign Ministry strategy to stabilise the current crises in the Mediterranean is putting an emphasis on building a positive agenda for the region.

"There is a shared lexicon made up of ten keywords - commitment, responsibility, inclusion, opportunity, development, partnership, culture, rights, resilience and order," Alfano told journalists.

Presenting the Forum MED summit taking place from November 30 to December 2 at the Foreign Ministry, Alfano also said: "We are in an especially tense moment in the Mediterranean and dialogue is indeed the watchword."

"The summit is proof of Italy's integrated approach to the Mediterranean region. We don't just concern ourselves with one issue but we link various central themes, which if, taken in isolation, would not show the complexity of the Mediterranean today," he said.

Over 400 heads of state and government, cabinet ministers, businessmen, bankers and international organisations, academics and experts from around 50 countries will attend next week's summit, according to the Italian Foreign Ministry.