Vatican City State receives INTERPOL delegation amid prospective membership as INTERPOL's 187th member country

1 October 2008

ROME, Italy - With the Vatican City State’s application to become INTERPOL’s 187th member country set to be voted on at the organization’s General Assembly meeting in Saint Petersburg, Russia (7-10 October), INTERPOL Secretary General Ronald K. Noble and senior officials today visited the city state to discuss closer collaboration with INTERPOL and developing law enforcement capacity.

The increased use of INTERPOL's global police resources such as its databases and secure communication systems to address public safety, counter-terrorism and criminality was the focus of discussions which also involved INTERPOL’s Vice President for Europe, Dr Juergen Stock, Cabinet Director Roraima Andriani and Assistant Director of Legal Affairs Sandrine Capsalas.

Mr Noble’s secular visit – his first mission to the Vatican City State – included with his delegation an audience with Pope Benedict XVI, the head of state of one the world’s smallest independent nations. The INTERPOL visitors also met with Cardinals Lajolo and Bertone, the President and Secretary of State respectively of the Governorate of the Vatican City State which oversees the territory’s gendarmerie corps.

The head of the city state’s gendarmerie, Mr Domenico Giani, said on a visit to INTERPOL in September that closer co-operation with INTERPOL would mark a big step forward for security and public safety at the Vatican City State because of its access to the global police organization’s current network of 186 member countries law enforcement services and National Central Bureaus.