Obama meets Italian President
US President Barack Obama met his Italian counterpart Giorgio Napolitano and discussed a wide range of bilateral and global issues including Iran, Afghanistan, the Middle East Peace efforts, counter-terrorism and the global economy recovery.
"The President expressed his deep appreciation to President Napolitano for Italy's contributions around the world to promote peace and stability - including significant Italian deployments to Afghanistan, Lebanon, and the Balkans -as well as Italy's hosting of the 13,000 American service men and women and their families who call Italy home," the White House said in a statement.
"The President also expressed his support for a strong, integrated Europe capable of advancing our shared interests around the world, and for efforts to further strengthen the transatlantic relationship through the NATO Strategic Concept process which will help prepare NATO to address 21st century challenges," the statement said following the meeting between the two leaders.
During the meeting Obama thanked Napolitano for his strong leadership in Europe and his personal efforts to further advance strong US-Italian bilateral relations and transatlantic ties.
"The President said he looked forward to seeing Prime Minister Berlusconi at the upcoming G-8/G-20 meetings, and looks forward to furthering the already close cooperation between the United States and Italy in the months and years ahead," the White House said.