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Clean drinking water and COVID-19: Swiss aid convoy reaches conflict zone in eastern Ukraine

15.10.2020 — Press release EDA
The COVID-19 pandemic is also having an impact on the aid Switzerland provides to those suffering in the conflict zone in eastern Ukraine. For the first time, a large part of the aid convoy is made up of medical supplies to help overcome the COVID crisis. On 15 October 2020, the twelfth convoy organised by Swiss Humanitarian Aid, comprising 19 trucks, reached the Donetsk region.


Switzerland provides CHF 1 million to help flood-stricken Sudan

09.10.2020 — Press release EDA
The state secretary of the Federal Department of Foreign Affairs, Krystyna Marty, received the foreign minister of Sudan, Omer Gamareldin Ismail, in Bern on Friday. Various topics were discussed at the meeting, which was also attended by the director general of the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC), Patricia Danzi, and other federal administration officials. Swiss Humanitarian Aid announced at the meeting that it was allocating CHF 1 million to assist Sudan, which has recently been hit by devastating floods.


Switzerland completes emergency aid operation on Lesbos

30.09.2020 — Press release EDA
Switzerland responded immediately with emergency aid following a fire which devastated the refugee transit camp on the Greek island of Lesbos. Over several weeks, Swiss Humanitarian Aid focused on access to safe drinking water, medical support in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic and disaster risk reduction. It also dispatched five tonnes of relief supplies to the facility. Switzerland is ending its emergency aid activities on Wednesday 30 September, having restored access to clean drinking water for 10,000 people. It will continue its support in the form of medium and long-term assistance.


Federal Council sets four Swiss priorities for UN General Assembly's 75th session

11.09.2020 — Press release EDA
In summer, the Federal Council set the priorities for the UN General Assembly. At its meeting of 11 September 2020, it was informed about the Foreign Affairs Committees’ consultation. The priorities include one concerning global efforts to mitigate the impact of COVID-19. In light of the COVID-19 pandemic, the opening of the 75th session of the UN General Assembly at the end of September will take place via video conference, with President of the Swiss Confederation Simonetta Sommaruga and Federal Councillor Ignazio Cassis, head of the Federal Department of Foreign Affairs, representing Switzerland.


UNIDO Director General visits Bern

09.09.2020 — Press release EDA
Federal Councillors Guy Parmelin and Ignazio Cassis welcomed the director general of the United Nations Industrial Development Organization UNIDO, LI Yong, to Bern on Wednesday, 9 September 2020. The agenda for the official working visit includes the impact of the coronavirus crisis and the measures taken, as well as the ongoing reform of the United Nations.


UNHCR: Switzerland donates masks for relief work on the ground

08.09.2020 — Press release EDA
A global pandemic does not only pose a threat to people. It is also a major obstacle for humanitarian aid. If protective equipment is not available, it is not possible to provide assistance on the ground. Swiss Humanitarian Aid is therefore donating three million face masks in response to this problem and in order to protect the people working on the front lines. The consignment was handed over to the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) on Tuesday, 08 September 2020.


Swiss Humanitarian Aid completes rapid response mission in Beirut: 80 buildings inspected, numerous schools and hospitals repaired

04.09.2020 — Press release EDA
Over the past month, 38 experts deployed by the Swiss Humanitarian Aid Unit (SHA) have been working in the Lebanese capital to assist in the immediate aftermath of the explosion on 4 August 2020. They have examined the stability of damaged buildings, supported maternal and child health care in two hospitals and helped to repair 19 schools. Swiss Humanitarian Aid's rapid response mission comes to an end on 5 September, with further support measures entrusted to the Swiss cooperation office at the Swiss embassy in Beirut.


Switzerland increases contribution to Green Climate Fund to strengthen climate protection in developing countries

19.08.2020 — Press release EDA
In a landmark decision in the fight against climate change, on 19 August 2020 the Federal Council approved a USD 150 million contribution to the Green Climate Fund (GCF) over the next four years. The GCF helps developing countries implement the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change by funding their efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and adapt to climate change.


2020 virtual annual conference: live – with Swiss Humanitarian Aid

19.08.2020 — Press release EDA
Humanitarian challenges in the shadow of the COVID-19 pandemic will be the focus of the 2020 Annual Conference of Swiss Humanitarian Aid, which this year will take place online from 1.30pm to 3pm on 20 August. This free event will take you behind the scenes of Swiss Humanitarian Aid at head office in Bern.


Beirut explosion: Switzerland steps up relief aid

14.08.2020 — Press release EDA
The immense scale of the explosion in the Lebanese capital on 4 August has severely affected the country's health system. On 13 and 14 August 2020, the Federal Department of Foreign Affairs sent more Swiss Humanitarian Aid Unit experts to Beirut.


Federal Council adopts report on Switzerland's implementation of international humanitarian law

12.08.2020 — Press release EDA
Bern, 12.08.2020 – On 12 August 2020, the Federal Council adopted a voluntary report on the implementation of international humanitarian law by Switzerland. Seventy-one years after the adoption on 12 August 1949 of the Geneva Conventions, Switzerland is one of the first states to do so. Respecting, strengthening and promoting international humanitarian law are written into Switzerland's DNA. Switzerland intends to set an example and encourage other states to take similar initiatives. This would foster dialogue among states in order to improve the protection of victims of conflicts worldwide.

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