Russia and Italy: Towards Each Other
President of the Italian Senate about the dialogue between countries
President of the Senate of Italy Maria Elisabetta Alberti Casellati pays special attention to developing Russian-Italian relations in her activity. In her speech at the session of the Federation Council of the Federal Assembly of the Russian Federation, Ms. Alberti Casellati told about the necessity of cooperation between countries for the sake of global peace. She took part in the session together with her colleagues, delegates of the Italian Senate who were on an official visit to Russia.
Ms. Alberti Casellati received a degree in law and Canon law; she also is a specialist in family law. She started her political career in 1994 in the Forza Italy party having become one of its founders. Maria Elisabetta Alberti Casellati was a member of Senate, took a position of the vice-leader of her party in the Senate, and then became its leader. She served as an undersecretary of Health and Justice in Silvio Berlusconi’s governments for many years.
In 2018, Maria Elisabetta Alberti Casellati was elected President of the Senate, becoming the first woman in Italy to ever hold this position.
During her speech at the session at the Federation Council, Ms. Alberti Casellati noted that Russia and Italy had close political, economic, and cultural relations, and parliamentary diplomacy could contribute to them greatly. Both countries are linked by history as well as by common values.
As a representative of the EU member state, Maria Elisabetta Alberti Casellati stressed that political forces in Italy were unanimously convinced in the necessity of more constructive relations between the EU and NATO on the one hand and with the Russian Federation on the other.
Today, according to them, it is important to go back to conditions that would allow overcoming the sanctions regime and conducting a dialogue on the basis of all that unites but not divides countries.
“Russia is an integral part of the European identity. This is a large country that spans two continents and is deeply integrated in the life of both”, says Maria Elisabetta Alberti Casellati. She believes that there is not just a relation but a whole combination of identity features, which are common for Russia and Europe. Russian artists, writers, and composers contributed greatly to the development of European civilisation and culture. Moreover, Russia played a key role in the victory over Nazi Germany in the World War II and liberation of Europe from Nazi totalitarianism. Italian soldiers who demonstrated exceptional heroism and bravery also fought for peace on the planet.
“We have a duty before casualties on both sides: no more war, no more conflicts between peoples that are largely linked by common Christian roots and that are destined to live in amity, not in conflict”, stressed the speaker.
According to Ms. Alberti Casellati, today Russia plays a key role in maintaining the fragile balance in the world arena. This role may be crucial in the face of a serious threat to global peace. Russia performs the most important function, which is stabilising the situation in conflict areas and combating terrorism in all its manifestations.
As stressed by Maria Elisabetta Alberti Casellati, it is important that such great powers as Russia and the USA with other major political actors including the EU find the way to constructive and close cooperation for the sake of stability and global security.
Together they will be able to counter old and new threats to peace, contribute to progress of the least developed regions of our planet, and address important global issues.
The speaker proudly noted that her country had played a significant role in bringing states together at different times. She reminded the listeners of the Pratica di Mare agreement in 2002. This document was about the expansion of cooperation between Russia and NATO and establishment of the NATO-Russia Council. It was a symbolic ending of the Cold War lasting for half a century. Today, it is important to come back to that issue and restore the so-called Pratica di Mare spirit in the global interest.
Dialogue between parliaments is an efficient tool in the movement towards close and kindhearted cooperation between countries and peoples. Every step in this direction is a step to peace, security, and well-being.
“Russia and Italy are countries with great cultures having much in common. Our destiny is to move towards each other and closely cooperate. I believe today we have taken one more step in this direction”, concluded Ms. Alberti Casellati.
Anna Repina, news agency of the Eurasian Women’s Community
Translated by Nikolay Gavrilov