John F. Kennedy photo

Joint Statement Following Discussions With Prime Minister Fanfani of Italy.

June 13, 1961

PRESIDENT Kennedy and Prime Minister Amintore Fanfani today concluded a cordial and constructive two day series of consultations on a broad range of international problems and matters of interest to the governments and peoples of the United States and Italy who are engaged in the work of defending freedom and strengthening peace. The two reviewed the important role which Italy has played in the rebuilding of post-war Europe and the extraordinary rise of Italian strength and vigor in this era.

They reaffirmed the strong ties of friendship and heritage which bind the two countries.

The President and the Prime Minister met alone for a period of time and were later joined in discussions by Foreign Minister Antonio Segni, Secretary of State Dean Rusk, Ambassador Sergio Fenoaltea, Ambassador G. Frederick Reinhardt and other high officers of the foreign ministries of both countries. President Kennedy informed the Prime Minister in detail concerning his recent conversations with Premier Khrushchev in Vienna and views were exchanged on the principal issues involved, including Berlin and disarmament. The President and the Prime Minister found themselves in complete agreement on the need for strengthening the Atlantic community both as an instrument of defense and in its political and economic aspects and for maintaining and developing the closest Western consultations on all major international questions.

There was concurrence on the need for continuing international efforts to reach a workable agreement on disarmament with adequate safeguards. They also agreed on the importance and utility of further progress towards European integration and on the need for continuing Western solidarity in the face of the unremitting Communist challenge to the cause of freedom.

The two leaders also discussed in detail the problems related to economic and technical assistance to the newly-emerging and developing countries of the world with particular reference to the countries of the Mediterranean area, Latin America and Africa--areas where Italy has especially close ties based on history, culture and economic association.

Prime Minister Fanfani stated in this regard that the Italian Government--within the limits of Italy's capabilities and of the engagements already undertaken for the development of Italy's southern regions--is ready to participate with its contribution to the implementation of these programs which will be agreed upon. It was agreed that in making plans for the further elaboration of the program for assisting emerging and developing nations the two governments should maintain contact between themselves and with the many other friendly governments as well as the governments concerned whose support and participation are essential to the success of the program.

Prime Minister Fanfani also had meetings during his visit with Secretary of State, Mr. Dean Rusk, the Secretary of the Treasury, Mr. Douglas Dillon. Foreign Minister Segni also met with Secretary of Defense Robert S. McNamara. The Italian leaders also met with leaders of both Houses of Congress.

This meeting again confirmed the profound and intimate relations between the two countries and the common aspirations of these governments to maintain peace and security and freedom in the promotion of the welfare of the peoples of the world.

Prime Minister Fanfani is expected to leave Washington by car tomorrow morning, June 14, for further visits in Baltimore, Philadelphia, and New York before his return to Italy on June 16. Foreign Minister Segni will return to Italy on June 14.

John F. Kennedy, Joint Statement Following Discussions With Prime Minister Fanfani of Italy. Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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