Italy on April 19 called on Turkey to release a journalist arrested this month near the Syrian border while he was researching refugees. Gabriele Del Grande, 34, was clapped in cuffs by Turkish police on April 9 during interviews with people who had fled the war-torn neighboring country for a book he is writing on the conflict and the origins of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL). The foreign ministry in Rome said in a statement that Del Grande had managed to speak to his relatives by telephone on April 18 but that “this is obviously not enough”. European Parliament President Antonio Tajani, an Italian politician, also called for his immediate release.
Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu on April 10 extended his condolences to Egyptian counterpart, Sameh Shoukry, over two Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) church attacks in the country in a phone call, marking a rare diplomatic interaction between the two countries since relations soured after the ouster of Mohamad Morsi in 2013. Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi announced a three-month state of emergency following twin church bombings by the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) that killed at least 44 people on Palm Sunday, April 9, the deadliest attacks on the minority in recent memory.