The Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, Luigi Di Maio, visited Ukraine today, following the anniversary of the country’s independence. In the capital Kyiv, he had meetings with the President of the Republic, Volodymyr Zelensky, with the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Dmytro Kuleba, and with the Minister of the Interior and co-President of the Italian-Ukrainian Committee for Economic, Industrial and Financial Cooperation, Denis Monastirsky.

The head of the Farnesina reiterated Italy’s strong support for the territorial integrity, sovereignty, independence and freedom of Ukraine, as well as the firm support for its European path and its future reconstruction.

During the visit, Minister Di Maio went to Irpin, a city tragically hit by the Russian aggression, which became a symbol of Ukrainian resistance, and visited the “Ukraine Crucifixion” exhibition, where artifacts and testimonies illustrating the devastation suffered by the country following the invasion.

The Head of State of Ukraine thanked the Italian government and Prime Minister Mario Draghi, as well as the entire Italian society for supporting the independence and sovereignty of Ukraine.

“In recent months, we’ve built relations between our states, which helped Ukraine withstand the struggle for our independence. Italy became one of the leading states that supported Ukraine, our society, forcibly displaced citizens,” said Volodymyr Zelenskyy.

The President also thanked Italy for its financial and defense support.

The Head of State noted Mario Draghi’s leadership in supporting Ukraine’s status as a candidate for joining the European Union.

“On the squares of the largest and even small cities in Italy, we have always seen our flags next to the Italian flags in support of our sovereignty and our candidacy,” Volodymyr Zelenskyy said.

The President of Ukraine emphasized the importance of Italy’s leadership in the context of the preparation of the eighth package of sanctions against Russia. He also emphasized the need to introduce visa restrictions for Russian citizens.

“Separately, there is great political support from Italy within both the United Nations and our Second Summit of the Crimea Platform. I am grateful that the Prime Minister found time to personally support (the summit – ed.),” said the Head of State.