Italy has recalled its ambassador to Egypt following dissatisfaction with Cairo’s investigation into the murder of PhD student Giulio Regeni in January.

According to a statement from the Italian foreign ministry the ambassador has been recalled for consultations regarding the on-going investigation.

Regeni was found dead in a Cairo suburb days after going missing on 25 January. Egyptian officials claim he was killed by a gang that specialises in kidnapping foreigners, although a post-mortem autopsy shows signs of what rights groups have called “state-like torture”.

Regeni’s research into trade union activity in Egypt is believed to be the reason he was targeted by state security, although Cairo strongly denies this.

Italian prime minister Matteo Renzi said Italy will not settle for what he called a “convenient truth” after Egyptian officials briefed their Italian counterparts on the investigation into the killing.

The Italian prosecutor also released a statement saying “[he] reiterated his conviction that there are no elements to directly link the gang to the torture and death of Giulio Regeni.”

Since the ousting of the Muslim Brotherhood in 2013, rights groups have criticised the current government for its clamping down on dissident. Some estimates say that up to 1,000 people have gone missing since 2013. Thousands more Islamist and liberal activists have been jailed.

The case of the Italian student further dents Egypt’s international reputation as tourists continue to stay away from the North African state following the killing of Mexican tourists and the downing of the Metrojet passenger flight last year.