Challenging the Vatican's Diplomatic Status at the United Nations.


U.N.: "Catholics For a Free Choice" Attack the Church... Again

The See Change Campaign - Catholics For A Free Choice

US CONGRESS TO DEFEND POPE AT UNITED NATIONS /BOTH HOUSES EXPECTED TO CONDEMN CAMPAIGN FOR UN VATICAN OUSTER

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EFFORT LAUNCHED TO PROTECT VATICAN STATUS AT UN

Thomas Legislative Information on the Internet

Below is the resolution before the U.S. Senate to defend the Vatican's special diplomatic status at the United Nations.  A similar resolution H.CON.RES.253.IH is before the House of Representatives.

 

SCON 87 IS

106th CONGRESS

2d Session

S. CON. RES. 87

Commending the Holy See for making significant contributions to international peace and human rights, and objecting to efforts to expel the Holy See from the United Nations by removing the Holy See's Permanent Observer status in the United Nations, and for other purposes.

IN THE SENATE OF THE UNITED STATES

March 1, 2000

Mr. SMITH of New Hampshire (for himself,
Mr. SANTORUM,
Mr. HELMS,
Ms. LANDRIEU,
Mr. STEVENS,
Mr. ASHCROFT,
Mr. INHOFE,
Mr. MCCAIN,
Mr. COVERDELL, and
Mr. BROWNBACK)

submitted the following concurrent resolution; which was referred to the Committee on Foreign Relations

CONCURRENT RESOLUTION

Commending the Holy See for making significant contributions to international peace and human rights, and objecting to efforts to expel the Holy See from the United Nations by removing the Holy See's Permanent Observer status in the United Nations, and for other purposes.

Whereas the Holy See is the governing authority of the sovereign State of Vatican City;

Whereas the Holy See has an internationally recognized legal personality, which allows it to enter into treaties as the juridical equal of a state and to send and receive diplomatic representatives;

Whereas the diplomatic history of the Holy See began over 1,600 years ago, during the 4th century A.D., and the Holy See currently has formal diplomatic relations with 169 nations, including the United States, and maintains 179 permanent diplomatic missions abroad;

Whereas, although the Holy See was an active participant in a wide range of United Nations activities since 1946, and was eligible to become a member state of the United Nations, it chose instead to become a nonmember state with Permanent Observer status over 36 years ago, in 1964;

Whereas, unlike other geographically small countries such as Monaco, Nauru, San Marino, and Liechtenstein, the Holy See does not possess a vote in the General Assembly of the United Nations;

Whereas, according to a July 1998 assessment by the United States Department of State, `(t)he United States values the Holy See's significant contributions to international peace and human rights';

Whereas during the past year, certain organizations that oppose the views of the Holy See regarding abortion and the sanctity of human life have initiated an organized effort to pressure the United Nations to remove the Permanent Observer status of the Holy See; and

Whereas the removal of the Holy See's Permanent Observer status would constitute an expulsion of the Holy See from the United Nations as a state participant: Now, therefore, be it

Resolved by the Senate (the House of Representatives concurring), That Congress

(1) commends the Holy See for its unique contributions to a thoughtful and robust dialogue in issues of international concern during its 36 years as a Permanent Observer at the United Nations;

(2) strongly objects to any effort to expel the Holy See from the United Nations as a state participant by removing its status as a nonmember state Permanent Observer;

(3) believes that any degradation of the status accorded to the Holy See at the United Nations would seriously damage the credibility of the United Nations by demonstrating that its rules of participation are manipulable for ideological reasons rather than being rooted in neutral principles and objective facts of sovereignty; and

(4) contends that any degradation of the status of the Holy See will damage relations between the United States and the United Nations.

 



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