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Eighth arms package coming Tajani tells Zelensky

Ukraine priority of Italian G7 presidency minister says in Kyiv

02 October, 21:50

(dell'inviato Mattia Bernardo Bagnoli) (ANSA) - KIEV, 02 OTT - Italy working on its eighth arms package for Ukraine, Deputy Premier and Foreign Minister Antonio Tajani told President Volodymyr Zelensky on the sidelines of the EU Foreign Affairs Council in Kyiv Monday. He said Italy is ready to help Ukraine in protecting its infrastructure next winter too. Tajani also guaranteed Italy's concrete support in the Ukrainian path to EU membership also through the support of some institutions, for example through the Guardia di Finanza tax police. Furthermore, he told Zelensky that Ukraine will be a priority of Italy's term as president of the G7 next year in the face-to-face meeting, reportedly one of the few the Ukrainian leader has had, besides the one with EU High Representative for Foreign and Security Affairs Josep Borrell.
    The encounter took place "in a spirit of great and special mutual friendship between the governments," official sources said. Zelensky, meanwhile, welcomed Monday's statement on the Italian sponsorship of the reconstruction of Odesa Cathedral.
    The historic Orthodox Cathedral of the Transfiguration was hit and badly damaged during Russian missile attacks on Odesa on July 23 in which at least two people died and over 20 were injured. Tajani stressed the symbolic importance of this act.
    "We have signed an agreement for the reconstruction of Odesa Cathedral and this is a political and cultural message for Ukraine," Tajani said as he arrived at a European Foreign Affairs Council. "We are here to strengthen Ukraine and international law. "There can be no peace without justice".
    Tajani said during the Council that Ukraine can count on the Italian government's support in its battle for freedom, according to diplomatic sources. Italy has been a strong supporter of Ukraine since Moscow's invasion last year, both under the government of Premier Giorgia Meloni and that of her predecessor Mario Draghi. This support has been shown both by military and other aid aid and backing for the successive rafts of Western sanctions on Russia. Zelensky has frequently lauded Meloni for her unstinting support. She has also been praised by other leaders for this reason. (ANSA).

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