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Vatican Police Flag

Last modified: 2013-04-27 by rob raeside
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image by Jens Pattke, 6 October 2012

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Police Flag

The Corpo della Gendarmeria dello Stato della Cittą del Vaticano (English: Corps of Gendarmerie of Vatican City State), usually referred to as Gendarmeria Vaticana, and from 1991 to 2002 known as Corpo di Vigilanza dello Stato della Cittą del Vaticano is the gendarmerie, or police and security force, of Vatican City. It was officially established on February 12, 1971 as Ufficio Centrale di Vigilanza (Central Security Office) and it is part of Interpol since October 7, 2008.

Its origins date back to the Corpo dei Carabinieri Pontifici (Papal Carabineers Corp), dependent to the Ministro delle Armi (Ministry of the Army), established under Pope Pius VII, in 1816 after the reestablishment of the Stati della Chiesa or Papal States as a result of the Congress of Vienna (1814-1815). In 1849 Pope Pius IX transformed it into the Reggimento dei Veliti Pontifici (Papal Security Regiment). Then in 1970, Pope Paul VI first through a letter dated September 14, 1970, then by Law No. LXVII of December 15, suppressed all military corps, except the Swiss Guard. And the Carabinieri were transformed into the Ufficio Centrale di Vigilanza. Then the Law No. CLXVIII of March 25, 1991, changes it to the Corpo di Vigilanza dello Stato della Cittą del Vaticano. Then by Law No. CCCLXXIV of January 2, 2002 its changed into the Corpo della Gendarmeria dello Stato della Cittą del Vaticano, and finally by Decree No. 476431, of September 18, 2008, the Regulation of the Corps is established.

The corps is responsible for security, public order, border control, traffic control, criminal investigation, and other general police duties in Vatican City including providing security for the pope outside of Vatican City. The corps has 130 personnel and is a part of the Direzione dei Servizi di Sicurezza e Protezione Civile (Security and Civil Defense Services Department) created by Law No. CCCIXXXIV of July 16, 2002, and it also includes the Corpo dei Vigili del Fuoco (Vatican Fire Brigade) (official website:, an organ of the Governorate of Vatican City".

The flag is a blue horizontal flag with the coat of arms (

Images of the flag can be seen here: (Source:,,,,,,,,,

For additional information please see:
Corpo della Gendarmeria dello Stato della Cittą del Vaticano (official website)

Esteban Rivera, 4 October 2012