World Refugee Day. The Sovereign Order of Malta launches international campaign: No to the construction of walls


National Associations, rescue corps and volunteers unite to highlight the worldwide drama

The number of refugees and displaced persons worldwide has reached levels not recorded since the end of World War II. In Syria, over four years of conflict now mean that a family is forced to leave home every 60 seconds. It is calculated that every 3 seconds a person becomes displaced in some part of the world. 52 million people are in flight from disasters, wars and famine. Half of them are children. Some 17 million are refugees, over 33 million are internally displaced – that is, forced to leave their homes although staying in their country – and about 1.5 million are asylum seekers. In 2014, there were 866,000 new asylum applications in the industrialised countries – the majority were Syrians followed by Iraqis. Numbers that reflect a world in flames with burgeoning new crises and old trouble spots flaring up.


Credentials presented by Slovenia and Panama


The Grand Master of the Sovereign Order of Malta, Fra’ Matthew Festing, received in audience in the Magistral Palace for the presentation of their Letters of Credence, the new Ambassadors of:

Slovenia, H.E. Tomaž KUNSTELJ
Panama, H.E. Miroslava ROSAS VARGA

Latest interventions of the Order of Malta in the World

Refugee Crisis in South-East Asia: Rohingya flee in their thousands


Malteser International provides relief to refugees in Indonesia and Myanmar

Thousands of members of the Muslim Rohingya minority from Myanmar, as well as people fleeing from poverty in Bangladesh, have attempted to flee by sea to Indonesia, Malaysia and Thailand. A great number of those have found themselves in distress at sea in dangerously overcrowded boats, often for weeks.
The Order of Malta’s worldwide relief agency, Malteser International, is on the scene: “The refugees stranded in the vicinity of our project in Banda Aceh are living in the confined space of a temporary refugee camp, sleeping on tarpaulins in overcrowded tents without enough to eat,” reports Cordula Wasser, head of Malteser International Asia team.




On 29 May, the Grand Master of the Order of Malta, Fra’ Matthew Festing, conferred the insignia of Bailiff Grand Cross of Honour and Devotion on Cardinal Peter Erdo, Archbishop of Esztergom-Budapest, Primate of Hungary, during a meeting in the Magistral Palace, Rome.
“I receive today this distinction as archbishop primate of a country which has strong links with the Order of Malta’s history, because of the people who have served in it and because of the work it has performed,” the cardinal said.


Sovereign Order of Malta organises ‘Religions Together for Humanitarian Action’ symposium in Geneva


Humanitarian aid in the light of the present international scenario: asymmetrical warfare and non-state actors

Yesterday in Geneva, representatives of four different faiths – Christianity, Islam, Judaism and Vedantism – as well as experts and diplomatic representatives, leaders of secular and faith-based humanitarian organisations met in the United Nations for the ‘Religions Together for Humanitarian Action’ symposium organised by the Sovereign Order of Malta.


Medical and social activities in Poland, at the centre of the visit of the Grand Hospitaller


The Grand Hospitaller of the Sovereign Order of Malta, Dominique de La Rochefoucauld-Montbel, visited Warsaw on May 21-22. The agenda included meetings with the Vice-Minister for Health Igor Radziewicz Winnicki, the Minister for Culture Malgorzata Omilanowska and with the Vice-Minister for European Affairs Henryka Mościcka Dendys.




On 21 May 2015, the Grand Master of the Sovereign Order of Malta Fra’ Matthew Festing and members of the Sovereign Council participated in the pilgrimage organized for the veneration of the Holy Shroud in the Turin Cathedral. Many of the Order of Malta’s Italian delegations took part in this event, accompanying the malades they assist.

Latest interventions of the Order of Malta in the World

Nepal: Malteser International to establish field hospital in earthquake region


Malteser International is to establish a field hospital in the Sindhupalchok region of Nepal, near to the epicentre of the second severe earthquake that hit the country on Tuesday. The project will be undertaken in collaboration with the University Hospital in Dhulikel in order to bring aid more quickly to the wounded near Lamosanghu – located on an arterial road around 130 km north east of Kathmandu, and around 40 km from the Chinese border.

Latest interventions of the Order of Malta in the World

Assistance to Pilgrims Walking to Fatima


The 39th assistance programme for pilgrims travelling to the Sanctuary of Fatima ended on 12 May last. This year, the Order of Malta’s Portuguese Association and its 200 volunteers helped 4,325 people over ten working days. First-aid posts were set up on the main roads to the Sanctuary starting from 200 kilometres north and south of Fatima. Healthcare, psychological and spiritual support, a meal and a tent to rest in were offered free of charge to the thousands of pilgrims who every year walk to Fatima for the celebrations on 13 May, the anniversary of the first appearance in 1917.


The Grand Chancellor received by the Italian Foreign Minister Paolo Gentiloni


The Grand Chancellor of the Sovereign Order of Malta Albrecht Boeselager was received yesterday by the Italian Foreign Minister, Paolo Gentiloni.

During the talks the mutual satisfaction for the activities and initiatives developed together was stressed. Particular attention was paid to the programmes for rescuing and assisting migrants in the Mediterranean and to the presence of the Order of Malta’s medical teams – doctors, nurses and rescuers – on the Customs Police and Coastguards’ vessels.