ITALIAN MINISTER OF DEFENCE VISITS KFOR AND MEET KOSOVO AUTHORITIES
Pristina, 6th May 2014. The Italian Minister of Defence, Mrs Roberta PINOTTI visited the Italian KFOR contingent in Pristina.
Minister PINOTTI was welcomed in KFOR HQ, Camp "Film City", by Major General Salvatore FARINA after which she conducted an office call and a briefing where the overall situation in Kosovo was discussed with COM KFOR and his international staff.
Major General Salvatore FARINA underlined the positive and close cooperation with Kosovo Police, EULEX, and with all the other international and local organizations, in order to maintain a Safe and Secure Environment and Freedom of Movement throughout Kosovo.
COMKFOR remarked also the importance of the regular meetings with the CHODs of the four countries bordering the KFOR Area of Responsibility, namely Albania, FYROM, Montenegro and Serbia.
During the visit, the Italian Minister of Defence met the most important political representatives of Kosovo including the President Atifete JAHAGA, the Prime Minister Hashim THACI and the Minister of Kosovo Security Forces, Agim CEKU, with whom Minister PINOTTI signed a "Statement of Intent" in which they expressed their aspiration for mutually beneficial cooperation, based on mutual interests for the security of the area.
Local political authorities expressed their appreciation to the Italian Minister for the significant contribution made to security and stability by the Italian contingent. Italy is one of the most important contributors of KFOR troops since 1999 and today is with more than 550 Italian soldiers serving in Kosovo.
Minister PINOTTI met also the Italian Ambassador in Kosovo HE Andrea FERRARESE, visited the Italian Army Units in Camp "Villaggio Italia" and DECANE monastery where she also met the Abbot of the DECANI orthodox monastery, Father Sava JANJIC.
The visit was also the occasion for Minister PINOTTI to overfly the northern Kosovo and to visit the KFOR Camp at GATE 1 where she attended a briefing by the Commander of Multinational Battle Group East.
At the end of her visit Minister PINOTTI greeted members of the Italian contingent where she emphasised the importance of KFOR in the delicate context of the Balkans and the need to continue to accomplish the NATO mission for the Security and the progress of all the people in Kosovo.