Following the terrorist attack in Paris, the Islamic State announced they would target Washington, London, and Rome. As a result, the Italian government is studying how to further increase security.
For now, security on roads and airports has been reinforced. An additional 2,500 security agents are patrolling the capital, in addition to 700 soldiers.
Rome is considered one of the most vulnerable cities. The Jubilee of Mercy will begin on December 8th and is expected to attract millions of pilgrims over the coming months. Controlling such a large number of people presents a major challenge for security forces. The Vatican is particularly vulnerable because of its symbolic value.
"Are you scared?”
"Yeah, a little bit. But you can't stop doing things. You got to continue doing what you need to do.”
"We did think about it, but we felt safe enough, I think, coming to Rome.”
Italian and Vatican police are coordinating efforts to protect St. Peter's Basilica and the Vatican from any threats.
The police have also strengthened security in the streets and at key landmarks in the city, such as its two airports and the Metro.
After the attacks in Paris, the Italian government raised its security alerts to the nearly highest level. Some are particularly concerned about one major target: Pope Francis himself.