Pepper spray for Rome police

Six-month training and trial period begins January

Italy's interior ministry has issued Rome police with pepper spray as part of a six-month trial, with 650 officers in the capital beginning training courses in its use on 18 January.

A ministry circular states that the device should be sprayed only in exceptional circumstances when police face "active resistance, threats or violence", after all attempts of negotiation or mediation have failed.

Two different types of spray will be tested, one for the first three months and the other for the second three-month trial.

480 police in Naples will also be trained to use pepper spray under the same conditions as those set for the Rome police.

Photo Corriere della Sera