Pubdate: Tue, 4 May 1999
Source: Associated Press
Copyright: 1999 Associated Press


VATICAN CITY - The head of the Vatican's Swiss Guard unveiled
reforms Tuesday, including psychological exams for new recruits, one year
after a disgruntled guard shot to death his commander, the commander's
wife and then killed himself.

The killings, the first in the Vatican in 150 years, prompted the
papal security force to review their recruiting procedures and

"There are many scars and open wounds that are silent witnesses of May
4, 1998," said Col. Pius Segmueller, the force's new leader.

He said reforms to the force include a mandatory entrance exam for new
recruits, and psychological tests in some cases.

The Vatican concluded in February that Cedric Tornay, 23, shot Col.
Alois Estermann, 43, and Estermann's wife, Gladys Meza Romero, 49, in
a fit of rage after the commander refused to give him a medal. Tornay then
his service revolver on himself.

The Vatican's inquiry said Tornay's reasoning might have been impaired
by marijuana and a brain cyst.

The new rules on conduct and guidelines on promotions go into effect
Thursday, the day 35 new guardsmen are to be sworn in, Segmueller said.

Segmueller pledged last year to make the force more professional and
bring its promotion procedures in line with those of the Swiss

The force serves in ceremonial guard duty, assists at Vatican
functions and provides protection for the pontiff. In 1506, Pope
Giulio II was reportedly so impressed by the bravery of Swiss
mercenaries that he founded the corps to defend the Vatican.
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