The International Human Rights Framework on the Right of Peaceful Assembly

The Holy See is not a state party to the 1966 International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR), Article 21 of which governs the right of peaceful assembly. 

The right of peaceful assembly is, though, a fundamental human right that is part of the corpus of customary international law. It is also a general principle of law.See Art. 38(1), 1945 Statute of the International Court of Justice.

The Holy See is not a state party to the 1950 European Convention on Human Rights, Article 11 of which governs the right of peaceful assembly.

The Domestic Legal Framework on the Right of Peaceful Assembly

Constitutional Provisions

The right of peaceful assembly is not protected under the constitution of the Holy See.

National Legislation

The right of peaceful assembly is not protected under the domestic law of the Holy See.

The Legal Framework on Use of Force During Assemblies

The Use of Force

International Legal Rules

Under international law, the duty on the state and its law enforcement agencies is to facilitate the enjoyment of the right of peaceful assembly. According to the 1990 United Nations Basic Principles on the Use of Force and Firearms by Law Enforcement Officials:

In the dispersal of assemblies that are unlawful but non-violent, law enforcement officials shall avoid the use of force or, where that is not practicable, shall restrict such force to the minimum extent necessary.

All force used by police and other law enforcement agencies must be necessary for a legitimate law enforcement purpose and proportionate to that purpose.

National Legislation

Article 1 of the Law of Public Security provides that:

The governor watches over the maintenance of public order, the security of the citizens, the integrity of their persons, the protection of their property, the safeguarding of their possessions, and the public hygiene and morality. 

With this purpose, either in the execution of the laws and regulations or on the occasion of events not provided for in the general provisions, he will take the measures he deems advisable. 

State Compliance with its Legal Obligations

Views and Concluding Observations of United Nations Treaty Bodies

The Holy See is not a state party to the ICCPR. It does not participate in the Universal Periodic Review under the UN Human Rights Council.

Regional Jurisprudence

The Holy See is not a state party to the European Convention on Human Rights.  

Downloads

1929 Lateran Treaty - Download (61 KB)
New Law on the Government of the Vatican City State (Italian original) - Download (166 KB)