Get our newsletter delivered directly to your inbox
I have already subscribed | Do not show this message again
Your email has been successfully registered.
The Swiss administration rejected the request made by NATO to treat Ukrainian civilians, claiming they are indistinguishable from military personnel.
In light of the request made by NATO, the Swiss government has rejected the possibility to treat Ukrainians wounded, explaining that this would represent a violation of its neutral state. The government cited that Ukrainian civilians are indistinguishable from soldiers.
NATO's Disaster Response Coordination Centre called on the Swiss Army’s Coordinated Medical Service (KSD) to offer medical care not only for soldiers but for civilians in Ukraine, in the face of the ongoing armed conflict in the country.
Reports indicate that Switzerland’s national association of health-service providers – the conference of cantonal health directors (GDK) had initially accepted the call, saying that they would admit injured Ukrainians. This decision was also approved by the Federal Health Office, but late in June, the Foreign Affairs department rejected the possibility, citing “legal and practical reasons.”
According to the Geneva Conventions, a country holding a neutral position is allowed to treat soldiers taking part in a conflict between third countries, but it should ensure that they “can no longer take part in the acts of war”; otherwise, the country would lose its neutrality.
#Switzerland refused to accept wounded Ukrainians for treatment, citing neutrality laws. The authorities of several cantons of the country were ready to accept #Ukrainian citizens for treatment at the request of #NATO, but federal authorities forbade this.
The Director of the Foreign Affairs Department’s Consular Directorate, Johannes Matyassy, said that “it is almost impossible to distinguish between civilians and soldiers” when it comes to modern-day Ukraine since “many civilians in Ukraine have taken up arms.”
Bern has not completely refused to help, instead, it shared its plans to provide some help “on the ground” by sending humanitarian aid to support civilian hospitals in Ukraine.
#WorldPostDay2021 On this day we celebrate the anniversary of the Universal Postal Union, which started in 1874 in Switzerland and which basically began the communications revolution. Postal workers are important to all of us pic.twitter.com/2jTQybJEe1