Foreign Minister Prince Saud Al-Faisal held talks yesterday with his Italian counterpart Lamberto Dini and expressed the hope that this visit would have a positive effect on the development of bilateral economic ties. Prince Saud said his talks with the Italian foreign minister focused on the Middle East situation and the issue of the Holy City of Al-Quds. He gave assurances that the Saudi and Italian positions both emphasize the principles of the Madrid Conference and the necessity of Israeli implementation of all agreements, the resumption of negotiations with Syria, and implementation of UN resolution 425 requiring unconditional Israeli withdrawal from southern Lebanon. Prince Saud went on to say that the talks also dealt with Kosovo, stating that Saudi Arabia and Italy both agree on the appropriateness of repatriating the refugees, ensuring their security, and putting an end to the forced migrations and ethnic cleansing at the hands of the Serbs.
Meanwhile, Finance Minister Dr. Ibrahim Al-Assaf met today with his Italian counterpart to discuss economic and trade relations between the two countries, and to review the issue of the Kingdom joining the World Trade Organization (WTO). He also met with the Italian foreign minister.
A joint communiqué was issued at the end of Crown Prince Abdullah's State visit to Italy.