29 April 2008 - Amb. M.-T. Pictet-Althann with H.E. Mr. Ban Ki-Moon,
Secretary-General of the United Nations


Welcome to the Permanent Observer Mission of the Sovereign Military Hospitaller Order of St. John of Jerusalem of Rhodes and of Malta to the United Nations Office and International Organisations in Geneva.



This website contains information on the Sovereign Order of Malta’s multilateral diplomacy in Geneva and offers direct links to other websites of the Order around the world, including that of its Government in Rome and of its Permanent Observer Mission to the United Nations in New York. It also enables you to discover the Order’s 900 year history and find out about its global humanitarian activities of to-day.



Thank you for visiting our website which will give you an insight into the Order’s diplomacy with a humanitarian dimension and a human perspective.




Grand Master Fra' Matthew Festing's visit to UNOG on
17th June 2011.

The Grand Master meets the Director General of the United Nations Office at Geneva - 17th June 2011

The Director General of the United Nations Office at Geneva Kassym-Jomart Tokayev received Grand Master Fra’ Matthew Festing. Discussed during the long and cordial meeting were the Order’s programmes in acute humanitarian emergencies and the progress of recent initiatives in the African continent with particular reference to Sudan and Congo. Satisfaction was also expressed for the joint projects undertaken in the Balkans, in Africa and in Asia and for the intention to strengthen joint humanitarian interventions in crisis areas.


After the meeting there was a ceremony during which the Grand Master donated to the United Nations Office in Geneva a sculpture entitled “Compassione” by the Venetian artist Giorgio Bortoli.

In thanking the Grand Master, Kassym-Jomart Tokayev stressed the universal nature of the compassion and commitment of the Sovereign Order of Malta and the United Nations to improve the living conditions of people worldwide.


Present at the meeting were Grand Chancellor Jean-Pierre Mazery and Ambassador Marie-Thérèse Pictet-Althann, the Order of Malta’s Permanent Observer to the United Nations at Geneva.






“The Inestimable Value of Manuscripts”: a recent publication describes the treasures of the Magistral Archives



Correspondence, Magistral decrees, Sovereign Council minutes, cabrei – volumes describing and illustrating the Order’s agricultural real estate – and account books. In addition to the documents produced for entry into the Order, such as family trees, parchments dating back to the Middle Ages, seals and coats of arms. These epitomize the immense resources of the Order of Malta’s Archives kept inside the Magistral Palace in Rome. We’re talking about a collection of documents in continual communication, even today, with the archives of institutions worldwide, illustrated for the first time in the book “Il valore inestimabile delle Carte. L’Archivio del Sovrano Ordine di Malta e la sua storia: un primo esperimento di ricostruzione” (“The Inestimable Value of Manuscripts. The Sovereign Order of Malta’s Archive and its History: an initial attempt at reconstruction”)


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Ordre de Malte France: aid for refugees in Burkina Faso



Ordre de Malte France has been providing refugees in Burkina Faso with medical aid and emergency supplies since the start of the crisis in Mali. First-aid and ambulance personnel support the medical centres in refugee camps near the Mali border. Ordre de Malte France also provides medical care for the local population.


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“Healing the wounds of war – Malteser International helps Syrian refugees”



We are in Kilis in southeast Turkey, a city close to the Syrian border that hosts more refugees than local residents. Here, the Order of Malta's worldwide relief agency Malteser International, in cooperation with its Turkish partner organisation, has constructed a hospital where medics treat refugees of the Syrian civil war. Those who have made it this far may have survived the war but have often suffered severe injuries. Their homes, their homeland, and often members of their families, are gone forever. Here at the field hospital the refugees receive medical care from their fellow countrymen. A glimmer of hope for a better future.


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Interventions of the Order in the World