National Unity and Armed Forces Day in Rome

Italian president and premier at ceremony in Piazza Venezia

Italian president Giorgio Napolitano and premier Matteo Renzi participated in the annual ceremony at Rome's Altare della Patria to mark national unity and armed forces on 4 November.

Napolitano laid 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.

Also in attendance at the ceremony were Rome's mayor Ignazio Marino and governor of Lazio Nicola Zingaretti, while the Italian air force's Frecce Tricolori aerial acrobatic team did a flyover.

President Napolitano said that Europe and in particular Italy faced the threat of "new and more aggressive forms of extremism and fanaticism" which the European Union and NATO "must be prepared to prevent and combat."

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