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Swiss cement security agreement with South Korea

Published on 01/07/2020

The Swiss government has signed an agreement with South Korea to advance cooperation in the areas of security and armaments.

On Wednesday the government approved an agreement between the two countries on the mutual protection of classified information. Under the so-called Information Protection Agreement, Switzerland and South Korea recognise each other’s security arrangements as equivalent, thus opening the door for the exchange of classified information. 

The government noted in a statement that Switzerland maintained similar agreements on the exchange and mutual protection of classified information with many other countries.

The agreement also reinforces Switzerland’s commitment of Swiss observers in the demilitarised zone on the Korean peninsula. The Swiss army has been tasked with helping maintain the ceasefire at the Korean border for more than six decades, making it the country’s longest ongoing military engagement abroad apart from the Swiss guards at the Vatican.

The agreement agreed on Wednesday is intended to make it easier for Swiss troops to accompany and monitor security exercises on the South Korean side.

Business interests are also expected to be strengthened by the agreement, under which Swiss companies are able to apply for security-sensitive jobs advertised by South Korean entities.