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author: Geoff Berridge

The system of privileges and immunities applicable to the international organisations in Switzerland and to the permanent foreign delegations in Geneva

2002

Amadeo Perez is Legal Adviser to the Permanent Mission of Switzerland to the International Organisations in Geneva, and this booklet is therefore authoritative. It is a revised edition of an article published in the UNITAR Employment Guide by Jean-Pierre Vettovaglia in 1991. As will thus be clear, it is designed to provide a non-legalistic description of its subject for new members of the Geneva diplomatic corps, specifically, those on the staff of the international organizations headquartered there as well as those attached to the permanent missions accredited to them.
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It achieves this aim very comfortably, notably by spelling out with great clarity the different privileges available to different categories of staff, and should be carried in the hand-luggage of every diplomat newly arriving in Geneva. However, students of diplomatic law will also find the booklet useful, not least because of its good bibliography. The final chapter on ‘The “Diplomatic” Institutions’ also provides a useful introduction to the comparatively recent efforts of the Swiss Confederation and the Republic and canton of Geneva to smooth the relations between the Geneva authorities and citizens on the one hand, and its large community of diplomats on the other. It would be interesting to know a great deal more about the Mediator, the Geneva Welcome Center, and the Diplomatic Committee, and perhaps in any new edition Mr Perez could provide some guidance to further reading on these subjects – if there is any.

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