Neutral Switzerland will stop blocking the supply of Swiss-made weapons to Ukraine, allowing European countries to transfer them to Kyiv, Swiss newspaper Neue Zürcher Zeitung reported on Jan. 24.
The Security Policy Commission of the Swiss National Council has adopted a proposal allowing other countries to re-export weapons received from Switzerland – in certain cases.
Switzerland’s existing laws prohibit the re-export of weapons to warring countries, born out of the country’s long-standing commitment to neutrality. The commission argues that this clause ought to have an exemption for cases when one side is being attacked in breach of international law, “… specifically in case of the Russo-Ukrainian war.” According to the UN General Assembly, Ukraine has full right to defend itself from Russia’s unprovoked aggression.
Additionally, the commission pointed out these changes would not violate the Swiss neutrality, as it would be third countries – not Switzerland itself – supplying Kyiv with Swiss-made equipment.
The proposal was adopted by 14 votes against 11. The decision will only apply to the war in Ukraine and will remain in force until the end of 2025.
In November 2022, Switzerland rejected a German request to allow Swiss-made ammunition to be re-exported to Ukraine, saying such a move would violate Swiss neutrality.