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Federal Council adopts dispatch on framework credit for the three Geneva Centres from 2020 to 2023

07.12.2018 — Press release EDA
The Federal Council intends to continue its financial support for the Geneva Centre for Security Policy (GCSP), the Geneva International Centre for Humanitarian Demining (GICHD) and the Geneva Centre for the Democratic Control of Armed Forces (DCAF). At its meeting on 7 December 2018, it has submitted the relevant dispatch to Parliament. The framework credit for the 2020–2023 period has been set at CHF 128 million.

European policy – Federal Council decides to launch consultations on the draft institutional agreement

07.12.2018 — Press release EDA
At its meeting on 7 December 2018, the Federal Council took note of the current outcome of the negotiations on the draft institutional agreement between Switzerland and the European Union. It also takes note of the fact that the EU considers the negotiations to have been concluded. The Federal Council considers the current outcome of the negotiations to be largely in Switzerland's interests and in line with the negotiating mandate. The Federal Council has however decided not to initial the institutional agreement for the time being, in particular in view of outstanding issues relating to the accompanying measures and the Citizens' Rights Directive. It will launch consultations on the draft agreement. The goal of these consultations will be to reach a consolidated position in order to seek further dialogue with the EU if necessary. The Federal Council will consider the status of these consultations in spring 2019.

Global compact receives go-ahead from Federal Council

07.12.2018 — Press release EDA
In its meeting on 7 December, the Federal Council reviewed the global compact on refugees, which is expected to be endorsed by the UN General Assembly in conjunction with its annual resolution on the work of the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR). The Federal Council has tasked the FDFA to instruct Switzerland's permanent mission in New York to vote in favour of this resolution and to inform the competent parliamentary committees of its decision.

Dialogue, prevention and confidence building: Switzerland reaffirms the OSCE's key role in ensuring greater security in Europe

06.12.2018 — Press release EDA
Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs Pascale Baeriswyl attended the meeting of the Ministerial Council of the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE), the central decision-making and governing body of the OSCE, on 6 December 2018. She also held several bilateral meetings on the margins of the event. Switzerland will resume chairmanship of the OSCE's Forum for Security Co-operation (FSC) for a period of four months starting on 1 January 2019.

Federal Councillor Ignazio Cassis meets UNICEF Executive Director Henrietta Fore in Bern

04.12.2018 — Press release EDA
Switzerland works closely with the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) on tackling crucial child protection issues. At Tuesday's meeting in Bern, Ignazio Cassis, head of the Federal Department of Foreign Affairs (FDFA), and UNICEF Executive Director Henrietta Fore stressed the importance of this relationship in implementing United Nations reforms and the objectives of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. Ms Fore also met Manuel Sager, Director General of the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC), along with members of Parliament.

UN High Commissioner for Human Rights pays visit to Bern

04.12.2018 — Press release EDA
Michelle Bachelet, the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, met with a Swiss delegation led by President Alain Berset in Bern on Tuesday, 4 December. The aim of the meeting was to have an in-depth exchange on cooperation between the Office of the High Commissioner in Geneva and Switzerland. Federal Councillor Ignazio Cassis and members of the Federal Assembly’s foreign affairs committees also took part in the discussions.

Fourth opinion on Switzerland of the Advisory Committee of the Framework Convention for the Protection of National Minorities and comments by the Swiss government

03.12.2018 — Press release EDA
In July 2018, the Advisory Committee of the Framework Convention for the Protection of National Minorities submitted to the Swiss authorities its fourth opinion on Switzerland of 31 May 2018. The Swiss government's comments on the opinion were drafted after consultation among the various federal offices concerned, the cantons and municipal authorities. They were submitted to the Federal Council on 30 November 2018 and transmitted to the Council of Europe.

Switzerland on track to achieve goals of international cooperation

30.11.2018 — Press release EDA
Switzerland committed to a set of measurable targets in the Dispatch on Switzerland's International Cooperation 2017–2020. At its meeting on 30 November 2018 the Federal Council adopted the mid-term report, a summary of the results to date, indicating that Switzerland is largely on course to meet its objectives. Switzerland's engagement contributes to global peace, poverty reduction and sustainable development. In turn, this also benefits its own economic and security interests.

The Federal Council outlines the strategic markers for the upcoming dispatch on international cooperation (2021–2024)

30.11.2018 — Press release EDA
Sustainable development and a stable international order are in Switzerland's interests. At its meeting on 30 November, the Federal Council discussed key priorities in preparing the upcoming dispatch on Switzerland's international cooperation for the period 2021–2024. As well as prioritising poverty reduction and human security, there will be greater focus on economic issues and harnessing the potential of the private sector more effectively. Efforts will also be made to consolidate strategic links between migration policy and international cooperation. Finally, the upcoming dispatch will identify four priority regions for FDFA initiatives in relation to bilateral development cooperation. For the first time, an optional consultation will be undertaken on the dispatch. This should generate a wide-ranging debate and strengthen support within Switzerland for its foreign policy actions.

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