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Vatican clamps down on smokers

The Holy See is set to impose a smoking ban in offices in the Vatican, from today, in a ruling that applies to everyone from cardinals to cleaners, and comes on top of an existing ban on smoking in public places.

Effectively, smoking is now banned indoors throughout the world's smallest state. The Vatican police force has the power to impose a $A53 fine on any offender.

Pope John Paul II, a non-smoker, approved the new measure on 4 June. The law stipulates that "No Smoking" signs should be put up around the Vatican, fuelling speculation that they will be in Latin, the official language of the Catholic Church.

If so, they would read "Vetatur Fumare" (No Smoking) or "Prohibetur Uti Fumo" (the use of smoke is prohibited), speculates Fr Reginald Foster, a Latin scholar who translated the Vatican's cash point machines from Italian into the language of ancient Rome.

Ban on Smoking Passed in Vatican (VIS)


1 Jul 2002