ROME (Reuters) – Deputy Prime Minister Matteo Salvini, continuing a war of words between Rome and Paris, said on Tuesday that France was not looking to bring calm to violence-ravaged Libya because its energy interests there rivaled those of Italy. Relations between Italy and France, traditionally close allies, have grown frosty since the far-right League and anti-establishment 5-Star Movement formed a coalition last year and took aim at pro-EU French President Emmanuel Macron. On Monday France summoned Italy’s ambassador after Salvini’s fellow deputy prime minister, Luigi Di Maio, accused Paris of creating poverty in Africa and generating mass migration to Europe. “In Libya, France has no interest in stabilizing the situation, probably because it has oil interests that are opposed to those of Italy,” Salvini told Canale 5 TV station. The source added that the accusation was baseless and reiterated that French efforts in Libya were aimed at stabilizing the country, preventing the spread of terrorism and curbing the migration flows.
Source: Egypt Independent January 22, 2019 12:01 UTC