Vatican, 01 June, 2021 / 12:55 pm (ACI Africa).
The Holy See has been granted permanent observer status to the World Health Organization following resolution adopted by consensus on May 31.
This means that the Holy See will be a non-member state Observer for the organization, and will be permitted to observe sessions and participate in debates. Unlike member states, the Holy See will not be allowed to vote on issues or put forth candidates.
A communique issued by the Holy See Press Office on June 1 stated: “The World Health Assembly adopted, by consensus, Resolution Participation of the Holy See in the World Health Organization presented by Italy, which formalizes the participation of the Holy See in the work of the World Health Organization as a non-Member State Observer.”
“This decision reflects the relationship that the Holy See has continuously maintained with this Organization since 1953 and it bears witness to the commitment of the family of nations in addressing, through dialogue and international solidarity, the global health challenges that afflict humanity.”
The Holy See has been an observer of the WHO’s World Health Assembly since 1953, and has been a permanent observer at the United Nations since 1964.