Oct. 16 (UPI) -- President Donald Trump hosted a reception honoring visiting Italian President Sergio Mattarella on Wednesday evening.
Trump opened the event in the East Room of the White House by highlighting the relationship between the United States and Italy as well as the community of Italian Americans living in the country.
"Today we celebrate the extraordinary friendship between Italy and the United States and we honor the faith and courage of the incredible Italian American community. The people in that community have done so much for our country," he said.
Mattarella, who was accompanied by his daughter, Laura, said he was grateful for Trump's words of friendship.
"Together as loyal allies, Washington and Rome face the challenges of an ever-changing global context," he said.
Martella added that he was happy to meet the many Italian Americans gathered at the White House whose labor, dignity and sacrifice "contributed to the progress of this great nation."