The Vatican City

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Vatican City was created by the Lateran Treaty in 1929 to ensure the Catholic Church's independence from the control of other countries, and has an area of only about 0.44 sq km. In addition to the Pope, the state said to have a population of about 800, most of whom are either clergy or members of the Swiss Guard.

Located within the city of Rome, Vatican City is surrounded on all sides by Italy, and nearly encircled by a stone city wall except for in St. Peter's Square, where it is separated from Italy only by a white line drawn on the ground. Various religious and administrative buildings are located within Vatican City's confines, but more than half of its area is taken up by the green space of the Vatican Gardens.

Country Name: Vatican City ,Capital: Vatican City

Technically its a country (permanent observer state status in UN) and is recognized worldwide as a "sovereign state" i.e rules itself and answers to no one else. This makes it by far the world's smallest independent "country", more than four times smaller than the runner-up, Monaco. Vatican City's supreme leader is the Bishop of Rome i.e Pope, who is also head of the worldwide Catholic Church. And not only is its independence undisputed by the international community, but it actually maintains diplomatic relations with the U.N. and many countries . Vatican diplomacy is conducted not in the name of Vatican City itself, but directly by the Catholic Church in the name of the "Holy See".

Vatican City is a state (i.e. country), while the Holy See is a religious organization which happens to govern Vatican City, but has a broader purpose. In Catholic Church terminology, a "see" is the seat of authority of a particular bishop, and the "Holy See" refers to the authority of the Bishop of Rome (the Pope). So the Holy See is the religious authority presiding over Catholic churches all across Rome (and by extension, the entire Catholic world), but it has normal government authority only in Vatican City and its "extraterritorial properties". These properties, mostly churches or historical palaces located elsewhere in Rome, have a status similar to foreign embassies: they are technically part of Italy, but are under the legal jurisdiction of the Holy See.

• Vatican City is the only undisputed country in the world which is not a member of the U.N. However, the Holy See does have status as a "permanent observer state" in the U.N. General Assembly The only other U.N. observer state is Palestine, which just gained that status last November.

• Although Vatican City was created only in 1929, the Holy See has existed for many hundreds of years. It was often recognized as a "sovereign entity" even when it had no territory, though at many points in history it did control territories much larger than today's Vatican City.

• The Holy See's official language is Latin, but Vatican City uses Italian as its state language. The Vatican's only military force, the Swiss Guard, gives orders in German.



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