G7 foreign ministers to meet in Italy

Indo Asian News Service

Rome, April 10 (IANS) Foreign Ministers and representatives of the G7 group will meet on Monday and Tuesday in the Italian city of Lucca to discuss Syria and ways to counter the Islamic State (IS) terror group.

The meeting will be attended by Italian Foreign Minister Angelino Alfano, US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and German Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel, French Foreign Minister Jean Marc Ayrault, UK Foregn Secretary Boris Johnson, Japan's Fumio Kishida, Canada's Chrystia Freeland and the High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Federica Mogherini, Efe news reported.

The two-day meet, which is a precursor to the G7 summit in May in the Italian city of Taormina, comes at a time of increasing concern among Western nations over terrorist threats and conflicts in the Middle East.

In fact, Syria will be one of the main points on the agenda, especially after the March 6 US airstrike on the Shayrat air base in the city of Homs, in response to the use of chemical weapons by President Bashar al-Assad's regime.

The Italian interior minister, too, has convened a meeting with his counterparts from Turkey, United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Jordan and Qatar on Tuesday.

On Tuesday, there will be a second session, which will be followed by a press conference to brief the media regarding the outcome of the meeting.

In addition to the Syrian crisis and the threat from terrorism, the foreign ministers will also discuss the instability in Libya, North Korea's intention to continue its nuclear and missile weapons program, ties with Russia and the Ukraine crisis.

Other matters on the agenda also include the situation in Iraq and the complete integration of Iran in the international community.