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.
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.
Across Hungary the Order of Malta’s Charity Service (MMSz) is sending its doctors to isolated communities living in great poverty. In the Roma settlement of Monor, southeast of Budapest, a third of residents suffer from high blood pressure, many are in urgent need of dental treatment and between 15-20% of children are visually impaired. Every week MMSz medics visit remote areas of Hungary providing families with basic health care, focusing in particular on eyesight. In the last year over 1,200 people across the country - and in neighbouring regions outside of Hungary - have received care.
In Bulgaria the torrential rain and flash flooding in July and August and again during last week have caused the death of fifteen people and forced thousands to leave their devastated homes. Besides the hundreds of houses, many other community buildings, such as orphanages, schools and homes for the elderly, were also destroyed. Camillo Zuccoli, the Sovereign Order of Malta’s ambassador to Bulgaria, has been in contact with the mayors of Asparuhovo and Mizia, two of the most affected areas, to set up groups of volunteers – coordinated locally by First Counsellor Bogdan Patashev – to help those most in need.
An interview with the Order of Malta Ambassador to the Philippines Typhoon Haiyan: 14.1 million people affected, about 10,000 dead, 4.1 million displaced and coastal towns in several provinces completely destroyed. The Philippine Association of the Sovereign Order of Malta, together with Malteser International, the relief agency of the Order, has been involved in the reconstruction process of the towns of San Antonio and Amandaheyan in Basey, Samar and in Santa Fe in Bantayan Island, Cebu. The Order of Malta in the Philippines implements the project of the government’s Relief and Rehabilitation Programme. Odelia Arroyo, Ambassador of the Sovereign Order of Malta to the Philippines since 2013 and former Hospitaller of the Philippine Association, recalls in this interview the havoc caused by the typhoon that hit the Philippines so violently in early November 2013 and tells us about the fast response required to address the needs of the stricken population.