National Unity and Armed Forces Day in Rome

Italian president to attend military parade in Piazza Venezia.

Italian president Sergio Mattarella will attend the annual ceremony at Rome’s Altare della Patria to mark national unity and armed forces on Friday 4 November.

More than 1,000 troops are expected to participate in the military parade which will lead to numerous traffic detours between 09.00 and 11.00.

Highlights of the event include the president laying a wreath at the tomb of the Unknown Soldier in Piazza Venezia – in honour of Italy’s war dead and casualties of international peacekeeping missions – and the flyover by the Italian air force’s Frecce Tricolori aerial acrobatic team.

The Italian armed forces are now employed in important peace keeping work all over the world, as well as in migrant rescue efforts in the Mediterranean and, more recently, in the earthquake-hit areas in the Appenines.

On 2 November Italy's defence minister Roberta Pinotti said that 500 extra soldiers were being deployed to Appenines region – to guard houses and prevent looting – bringing the total number of troops on emergency duty there to over 1,700.

The date of the annual military ceremony, 4 November, coincides with the anniversary of the armistice of Villa Giusti in 1918, which ended world war one on the Italian front.