ROME, February 18. /TASS/. The foreign and defense ministers of Russia and Italy discussed a moratorium on the deployment of short- and intermediate-range missiles at a "two-plus-two" meeting in Rome, Russian top diplomat Sergey Lavrov said at a press conference.
"We have thoroughly discussed strategic stability issues, including the United States’ withdrawal from the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty," he said. "We reaffirmed Russia’s commitment to refrain from deploying such weapons to certain regions unless similar US missiles are deployed there, which is what Russian President Vladimir Putin has stated on numerous occasions," Lavrov added.
According to him, the Russian ministers draw the attention of their Italian counterparts to the fact that the Russian president had called on the leaders of NATO member states and a number of other countries to agree on a moratorium on the deployment of such weapons.
"Most of them gave no response," Lavrov noted, adding that French President Emmanuel Macron had been the only exception. "I would also like to point out that Italian Foreign Minister Luigi Di Maio said recently that Italy saw no reason to reject President Putin’s proposal," the Russian foreign minister added.
"We welcome such an approach," Lavrov emphasized.