On the occasion of World Humanitarian Day, which is celebrated on 19 August, the Human Rights Ombudsman, Peter Svetina, emphasised that this day is celebrated to raise awareness about the efforts of those who help tackle crises both locally and around the world. Non-governmental and humanitarian organisations are frequently among the first to respond in the event of disasters, epidemics and conflicts and act as the first contact for people who are affected and endangered. "On this occasion, I thank all humanitarian workers and organisations who selflessly provide great help to all citizens, particularly the most vulnerable groups. I also call on the responsible authorities to provide safe working conditions and decent pay for humanitarian workers," Ombudsman Svetina highlighted.
He further noted that humanitarian organisations must not only be perceived as a substitute for what the state should provide. "The non-governmental and humanitarian organisations should not replace and assume the active role of the state and its obligations. The state should primarily assure welfare for everyone," stated the Human Rights Ombudsman, Peter Svetina.