Thank you, Mr. President,

Switzerland welcomes the Security Council's adoption of this resolution and thanks all Council members for their support. It is a strong and hopeful message, and an unequivocal one in favor of respect for international humanitarian law. We warmly thank all the co-sponsors of this resolution, another clear testimony towards the protection of humanitarian and UN personnel, and their centrality to humanitarian action.   

This resolution reaffirms the responsibility of States and parties to conflicts to respect and protect the civilian population, and in particular the men and women who work every day to help people affected by armed conflict. Today's vote therefore demonstrates the importance this Council attaches to this commitment, often in dangerous contexts. 

Allow me for a moment to put faces to some of those for whom this resolution comes too late. I'm thinking, for example, of Lorena Perez, the 38-year-old woman killed in Afghanistan a few years ago. As an ICRC physiotherapist, she was helping children, women and men in a rehabilitation center in Mazar-e-Sharif. Her colleagues remember her as “the heart of the center”. Let us also remember Sergio Vieira de Mello, former High Commissioner for Human Rights, killed in Iraq some twenty years ago along with 22 of his colleagues. In the words of Martin Griffiths, head of OCHA: « He devoted his entire life since his early twenties to humanitarian action and, always keeping a UN Charter in his pocket, expanded the notion of humanitarian action, before he paid for it with his life. » And let us never forget Komon Dioma, the Médecins sans Frontières driver killed in Burkina Faso a few months ago. This resolution pays tribute to them. It is dedicated to all those who commit themselves in contexts that are both fragile and complex, at the risk of their lives and of which we often only know the figures, whether in Gaza, Sudan or Ukraine.

In this context, and as provided for in this resolution, we are delighted to hear the Secretary General's recommendations for strengthening the protection of these men and women whose purpose is to assist and protect. 

This year we commemorate the 25th anniversary of the protection of civilians on the agenda of this Council, and the 75th anniversary of the Geneva Conventions, the cornerstones of international humanitarian law and a reflection of our common humanity. Universally ratified, they are more relevant than ever. To save lives, their implementation is essential.

I thank you.