Foreign relations of the Vatican City

From Academic Kids

The Holy See is the legal body that conducts diplomatic relations for the Vatican City. It maintains formal diplomatic relations with 174 sovereign states (, the European Union, and the Order of Malta; 69 of these maintain permanent resident diplomatic missions accredited to the Holy See in Rome. The rest have missions with dual accreditation outside Italy, as the Holy See does not accept dual accreditation with an embassy located in Italy. It also has relations of a special nature with Russia (Mission with an Ambassador) and the Palestine Liberation Organization (Office with a Director). The Holy See maintains 179 permanent diplomatic missions abroad (106 of which are accredited to sovereign states). The diplomatic activities of the Holy See are performed by the Secretariat of State (headed by the Cardinal Secretary of State), through the Section for Relations with States.

The Holy See is especially active in international organizations. It has permanent observer status at the United Nations in New York, the Office of the United Nations in Geneva and specialized institutes, the UN Food and Agriculture Organization in Rome and the UN Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization in Paris. The Holy See also has a member delegate at the International Atomic Energy Agency and at the UN Industrial Development Organization in Vienna. It maintains permanent observers at the Organization of American States in Washington, DC, and the Council of Europe. In addition, the Holy See has diplomatic relations with the European Union in Brussels. In 1997, the Holy See became a member of the World Trade Organization.

In 1971, the Holy See announced its decision to adhere to the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty in order to "give its moral support to the principles that form the base of the treaty itself." The Holy See is also a participating state in the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe.

The Holy See is the only European state that still recognizes the Republic of China (Taiwan) instead of the People's Republic of China. It is the longest lasting diplomatic ally of the ROC, having held official relations since 1942. Talks between the PRC and the Holy See on diplomatic recognition have been ongoing, with the main issue the treatment of Chinese Catholics. The PRC government controls a Chinese Catholic Association which does not recognize the authority of Rome and the PRC has officially banned an underground Catholic Church which does recognize the Holy See's authority.

See also

Nuncio, Cardinal Secretary of State

External Links

Representations of other Countries in Vatican City


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