Bürgenstock: the funny peace conference

Bürgenstock: the funny peace conference
Bürgenstock: the funny peace conference

François Nordmann

former diplomat, columnist

Published on May 6, 2024 at 6:41 p.m. / Modified on May 6, 2024 at 6:44 p.m.


Former ambassador, François Nordmann shares his networks and information behind the scenes of diplomacy every Tuesday

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So the invitations are gone. One hundred and sixty states, international organizations or religious dignitaries are called to visit Lake Lucerne. They will seek to jointly identify the steps towards a just and lasting peace in Ukraine, based on the Charter of the United Nations and international law. Switzerland will thus follow up on a request from Mr. Volodymyr Zelensky, President of Ukraine, expressed the day after a conference of government experts in international security meeting in Davos in January 2024. If Swiss diplomacy has not had the initiative of the conference, it at least seized the opportunity and took risks, demonstrating once again the flexibility of its policy of neutrality.

The date was undoubtedly not chosen at random. The conference will open a few hours after the end of the G7 summit, which meets in Borgo Egnazia, between Bari and Brindisi, in Puglia, from June 13 to 15, and which will not fail to reaffirm its condemnation of the aggression of Russia and its solidarity with Ukraine. As is customary, other heads of state from important countries in the South will be invited to attend by Ms. Giorgia Meloni, President of the Italian Council, who holds the presidency of the G7 this year. It is less than a two-hour flight from the Nidwalden airport of Buochs. This should simplify the life of personalities who might hesitate to specially cross the Atlantic or the Pacific to travel to Switzerland. From this point of view it is also a small concession to ecology…

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