The Holy See ratified the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (crc) in its dual personae as the government of the Catholic Church, and as the government of Vatican City State (vcs). The extent of the Holy See’s obligations under the crc in its former capacity is a current international debate, and the focus of this paper. The Committee on the Rights of the Child in its recent review process concluded that by ratifying the crc, the Holy See committed to its implementation, not only within the territory of vcs, but worldwide on behalf of Catholics “under its authority.” Conversely, the Holy See restricts its duty to that of the transmission of moral principles recognised in the crc to all people. This paper critically reviews the Committee’s concluding observations on the Holy See’s second periodic report, and ends by presenting possible alternatives to the Committee’s recommendations.
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