On 18 September 2023, Lieutenant General Süssli announced that Switzerland will halt the selling of bunkers and reintegrate them within the national defence strategy. This decision marks a significant change to Switzerland’s previous policy (Allen, 2023, para. 2). In 2010, the Swiss Defence Minister Maurer stated: “The nature of military threats has changed. The bunkers are poorly placed and the weapons they contain will only last for another ten or twenty years. It's not worth maintaining something that you're not going to use in the future” (Allen, 2023, para. 4).
On 3 September 2023, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy announced the replacement of the country’s defence minister. The cabinet reshuffle was made despite the apparent progress of Kyiv’s counteroffensive, which has seen its forces advancing into Russian-occupied areas. Oleksiy Reznikov’s dismissal as defence chief represents the most significant alteration within this government since Russia launched its full-scale invasion last year.
On 9-10 September, world leaders gathered at the 18th G20 Summit to discuss the prevalent issues facing the world in New Delhi, India. This year’s edition theme: ‘Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam’ or ‘one earth, one family, one future’. Issues of global economic growth along with climate concerns, digitalisation, and gender equality were on the agenda (European Council, Council of the European Union, 2023). However, one topic overshadowed all others: Russia’s war against Ukraine (Bose et al., 2023).
More than 26 years have passed since the Convention on the Prohibition of the Use, Stockpiling, Production and Transfer of Anti-Personnel Mines and their Destruction of 1997, usually referred to as the Ottawa Convention, was signed. However, it has not reached its goal of eradicating such weapons since the conclusion of the agreement over 40 years ago. Indeed, it is estimated that landmines killed or maimed more than 5,500 people in 2021, mainly civilians, half of whom were children.
On August 20, the governments of the Netherlands and Denmark issued a joint statement to announce the intention to deliver F-16s fighter aircraft to Ukraine (Government of the Netherlands, 2023). Danish Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen pledged to send 19 aircrafts in three instalments, while Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte did not specify any number (Sabbagh, 2023). Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy, for his part, claimed they reached an agreement for 42 fighter jets (Sabbagh, 2023).