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Putin says Italian president’s visit to Russia to ease tensions

Putin pointed out that Italy was Russia’s old and trusted partner

MOSCOW, April 11. /TASS/. Relations between Moscow and Rome may soon improve despite the fact that right now they are going through hard times, Russian President Vladimir Putin said at a meeting with his Italian counterpart Sergio Mattarella.

"We have been going through hard times but your visit brings hope that the situation will improve. We would like to leave behind all difficulties and misunderstandings so that we could cooperate normally again," Putin said.

He pointed out that Italy was Russia’s old and trusted partner. At the same time, the Russian president said that in the past few years, "there has been a 2.5-fold decrease in our trade turnover." "However, there are some positive trends, too. In the beginning of the year, the trade turnover increased by more than 30%," Putin added. He also pointed to close cultural and humanitarian relations between the two countries.