Italy to stage its first large-scale terrorism readiness drill next month

Rome will test its response to terrorism next month by simulating attacks on the subway and on some of Rome's most visited monuments, news reports and officials said Thursday.

The exercise is scheduled to take place in the first week of October and will be the first to test the reaction of rescue and law enforcement agencies to multiple attacks such as those that hit London on July 7, Italian dailies La Repubblica and Corriere della Sera reported.

Officials at the office of Rome's prefect, the top local security authority, confirmed that the exercise was in the works but wouldn't give any details.

The drill will simulate the effects of simultaneous explosions in three locations: A subway station, a famous monument and one of Rome's historic piazzas, the reports said.

Smaller-scale drills have taken place in recent months in subway and train stations, reports the AP.

Authorities were still deciding where to hold the drill, with the Colosseum, the bustling Piazza Navona and the subway station near the Spanish Steps among the possible simulated targets, La Repubblica said.

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