ROME, JULY 25 – Sicily is a symbol of the coexistence of cultures: this is one of the reasons why the Italian Minister of Foreign Affairs Angelino Alfano decided to make it the headquarters of the OSCE-Mediterranean Contact Group, which is scheduled to meet at the Palazzo dei Normanni in Palermo in October.
“At the Palermo meeting, I intend to present an ambitious cultural programme for the Mediterranean.”, Alfano told the Italian daily La Stampa. The Minister recalled the special place that Palermo and its immediate area occupy for world culture: the Arab-Norman legacy of the Sicilian city has been recognized by UNESCO in its World Heritage lists.
During its chairmanship of the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe, Italy intends to focus more on the southern nations and the Mediterranean, Alfano explained last week in Vienna, presenting the priorities of the Italian chairmanship to the
organization at OSCe headquarters in Vienna. It is from the Mediterranean, he stressed, that ”some of the most serious threats to Europe and the world come: terrorism and the migration crisis”.
According to the Minister ”the security dimension is complementary to OSCE’s Euro-Asian dimension,” he added. The crisis of the Mediterranean should be faced ”not only from the security point of view, but also from the point of view of fighting
intolerance and discrimination and fostering inter-cultural and
inter-religious dialogue, the basis of security”.”
Italy will take over the OSCE presidency on January 1, 2018: “We strongly believe in this organisation and in its mission of promoting peace, security and stability. It is an invaluable mission, all the more so in a European and international context as the one we live in, with the threats which we must face, that put balances seriously in jeopardy”, Alfano said. (@OnuItalia)