Vatican Gendarme Corps chief, Domenico Giani, has announced that the corps will join Interpol.
The Vatican gendarme corps will become the 187th member of the international security force Interpol, Zenit reports.
The Interpol general assembly will confirm the membership when it meets early next month in Russia. At that time, the secretary-general of the governorate of Vatican City State, Bishop Renato Boccardo, will sign the agreement.
Pope Benedict addressed representatives of the corps on Saturday, offering a brief greeting in which he expressed his "sincere gratitude for the competence and dedication" with which they serve the Church.
Giani also announced that an "agreement of cooperation with Italian police," due to the "upsurge in criminal activity," is being studied, Vatican Radio reported.
The gendarme corps oversee the security and public order which encompass all regular police duties, including border control, crime prevention and investigation, and enforcement of financial and commercial regulations.
Currently there are 160 members, all of Italian origin. The force includes personnel who specialise in anti-terrorist and anti-sabotage security.
Protection for the pope in Italian territory is guaranteed in collaboration with the Inspectorate for Public Security at the Vatican. Outside of Italy the gendarme cooperate with the police forces of the countries that host the Pope on his travels.
Vatican police to join Interpol (Zenit, 30/9/08)
Vatican Gendarme Corps