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Italy wants to host an emergency G20 meeting on Afghan crisis

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By euronews
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Italian Foreign Minister Luigi Di Maio addresses the media during a news conference at a G20 foreign affairs ministers' meeting in Matera, southern Italy, Tuesday, June 29
Italian Foreign Minister Luigi Di Maio addresses the media during a news conference at a G20 foreign affairs ministers' meeting in Matera, southern Italy, Tuesday, June 29   -   Copyright  Credit: AP
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Italy's foreign minister Luigi Di Maio on Friday confirmed that the last Italian military flight evacuating people from Afghanistan will depart from Kabul later in the day.

Di Maio said that among those aboard the departing C-130 Italian Air Force aircraft will be the Italian consul, who had stayed on in Kabul at the airport to oversee the evacuation of Italians and foreigners, as well as the top NATO diplomat, Stefano Pontecorvo, who is Italian.

Also aboard will be Italian Carabinieri paramilitary police and soldiers who helped maintain security for evacuations carried out by Italy.

Some 4,900 Afghans were evacuated to Italy, the minister told reporters.

Di Maio's comments came after a meeting with his Russian counterpart Sergey Lavrov.

Italy, which holds the rotating presidency of the G20, has proposed an extraordinary G20 summit on Afghanistan to be held in Rome in September before the final meeting already planned for the end of October.

"Italy recognises the importance of and need for Russia's active involvement in addressing global challenges and crises. Our proposal for calling an emergency meeting of the G20 on Afghanistan is aimed precisely at attracting the main powers to the search for a comprehensive solution that would satisfy all sides," Di Maio told TASS news agency.

Rome says there cannot be any concrete discussion on Afghanistan without the involvement of key foreign powers such as Russia, China and India.

As part of that consensus-building process, Draghi had phone conversations with world leaders in the past few days, including Russian President Vladimir Putin who endorsed the possibility of discussing the stabilisation of Afghanistan during an extraordinary G20 summit.

Additional sources • TASS