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Didier Burkhalter focuses on strengthening relations between Switzerland and Jordan and on the Syrian humanitarian crisis during visit to Amman

19.05.2017 — Media release EDA
On Friday, Federal Councillor Didier Burkhalter, head of the Federal Department of Foreign Affairs, and Jordan’s Foreign Minister, Ayman Safadi, signed a memorandum of understanding in Amman strengthening bilateral relations between Switzerland and Jordan. Mr Burkhalter then visited the Azraq refugee camp, where he officially opened a water supply system funded by the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation which gives 35,000 Syrian refugees in the camp direct access to drinking water.

Resilience is key

18.05.2017 — Article DEZA

From 22 to 26 May 2017, Switzerland will participate in a global conference on disaster risk reduction organised by the UN in Cancun, Mexico. The goal is to deliver on the commitments made under the Sendai Framework in 2015 in the context of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. A project co-financed by the SDC in Nicaragua has proven that prevention in this respect can be hugely beneficial to small farmers.

Didier Burkhalter in Cyprus for the meeting of the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe, and in Jordan to inaugurate a water supply system in a refugee camp

16.05.2017 — Media release EDA
Migration, its consequences and what a country like Switzerland can do to help will be at the top of the agenda during Federal Councillor Didier Burkhalter's two-day trip to Cyprus and Jordan. Mr Burkhalter, who is head of the Federal Department of Foreign Affairs, will be in Cyprus on Friday to attend the meeting of the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe. He will then go to Amman, the capital of Jordan, to inaugurate a water supply system in Azraq refugee camp. Switzerland's support for victims of the Syrian crisis is the country's largest humanitarian operation to date.

Didier Burkhalter meets Sudanese foreign minister in Bern

16.05.2017 — Media release EDA
On 16 May 2017 Federal Councillor Didier Burkhalter received Ibrahim Ghandour, the Sudanese foreign minister, in Bern. It is the first time since 2005 that a meeting at ministerial level has taken place between the two countries. The meeting covered recent developments in Sudan, the country's role in the region and opportunities for dialogue and cooperation to enable progress in the areas of political reform, human rights promotion and compliance, the management of migration and the protection of migrants.

The lasting imprint of Swiss cooperation in Vietnam

12.05.2017 — Article DEZA

As planned several years ago, the SDC officially terminated its bilateral cooperation activities with Vietnam at the end of 2016. Much lasting progress has been made over the years, and many rural inhabitants now have a say in local decision-making.

Coordinating assistance for people in need: Swiss and foreign search and rescue teams train in Switzerland

09.05.2017 — Media release EDA
Expertise, rapid response and good coordination save lives. Five teams from four countries are taking part in a training exercise designed to test their operational capabilities in a simulated emergency following a virtual earthquake. Swiss Humanitarian Aid, part of the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC), and the Swiss Armed Forces are hosting the three-day ACHILLES exercise, which is taking place between 8 and 10 May, mainly in the Swiss Armed Forces training village at Epeisses in the canton of Geneva. Alongside Swiss Rescue, teams from Germany, France and the UK are also taking part.

Innovative measures to help people in need: Switzerland and the ICRC to expand cooperation

01.05.2017 — Media release EDA
On 1 May 2017, Federal Councillor Didier Burkhalter and the President of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), Peter Maurer, renewed and expanded the 2013 agreement on cooperation between Switzerland and the ICRC. The new agreement will make it possible to explore the potential for innovative measures in fulfilling the ICRC’s humanitarian mandate. It could involve new technical solutions such as the reproduction of medical instruments in the field using 3D printing and the use of innovative financing models. International Geneva will also play a key role in the cooperation between the ICRC and Switzerland.

Switzerland reaffirms its commitment to multilateral development banks

12.04.2017 — Media release EDA
Multilateral development banks play a central role in supporting the poorest developing countries. Their expertise and size enable them to tackle global challenges such as financial crises, climate change and pandemics. On 12 April 2017, the Federal Council therefore decided to allocate the necessary resources to participate in replenishing the corresponding funds, namely the International Development Agency (IDA), the World Bank, the African Development Fund (AfDF) and the Asian Development Fund (AsDF).

Switzerland to support UN in drafting of global compact on migration

07.04.2017 — Media release EDA
The Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration is the international community's response to the challenges of migration at international level. The president of the UN General Assembly has tasked Switzerland's representative to the United Nations in New York, Ambassador Jürg Lauber, and his Mexican counterpart, Juan José Gómez Camacho, to facilitate the drafting of the international framework on migration.

Syria crisis – FDFA position statement

07.04.2017 — Media release EDA
Following the use of chemical weapons in Syria, which constitutes a war crime that Switzerland condemns in the strongest terms possible, Switzerland calls for a concerted and rapid response by the Security Council and to avoid a military escalation.

Mental health: a neglected aspect of development

06.04.2017 — Article DEZA

Access to physical and mental healthcare is a basic human right – one which for many people remains a luxury. The third Sustainable Development Goal stresses the right to health in general terms, highlighting the importance of access to healthcare for all and of promotion and prevention for mental health. 

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