Practice Relating to Rule 25. Medical Personnel
Section B. Equipment of medical personnel with light individual weapons
Switzerland’s Basic Military Manual (1987) states: “Medical personnel may be armed with light weapons for its own defence.”
Switzerland’s Regulation on Legal Bases for Conduct during an Engagement (2005) states:
178 For their own protection, medical personnel may be armed with a personal weapon (e.g. assault rifle, submachine gun, pistol). Explosive weapons and collective weapons are prohibited. Medical personnel do not participate in hostilities, except for their own protection or for the protection of the patients in their care. Nor must they be engaged in other harmful acts (e.g. intelligence services).
Switzerland’s Ordinance on the Red Cross Service (2006) states:
Article 1 Object and scope of application
1 The present ordinance regulates:
a. the attribution of the members of the Red Cross Service (RCS) to the army;
Article 9 Arming
1 In principle, members of the RCS carry out their tasks unarmed.
2 On request, the army can equip them with a pistol as an individual weapon and instruct them about their use.