• Switzerland edition
 
SVP UNDER FIRE
Prosecutor pursues SVP chiefs over 'racist' ad

Prosecutor pursues SVP chiefs over 'racist' ad

Published: 24 Apr 2012 10:08 GMT+02:00
Updated: 24 Apr 2012 17:41 GMT+02:00

A Zurich prosecutor has initiated criminal proceedings against some of the top figures in the far-right Swiss People’s Party (SVP) for infringement of anti-racism laws.

Last August, an incendiary advertisement claiming that “Kosovars slash the Swiss” was released as part of the SVP’s campaign to "stop mass immigration". Two Kosovar people made public complaints about the ads on the grounds that they discriminated against an entire ethnic group.

A criminal investigation was then launched in October last year, online news site 20 Minuten reported.

The ad described an incident, which took place on August 15th 2011 at Interlaken, a tourist resort in the Bernese Alps. According to news reports, a Kosovar man attempted to kill a Swiss Alpine wrestler by cutting his throat with a knife.

Some newspapers refused to publish the ad in its original form but agreed to go to press with a toned down version that read: "A Kosovar slashes a Swiss". However, the original ad was widely distributed online by the SVP as part of its initiative.

Now Zurich prosecutor Hans Maurer is opening criminal proceedings against some of the SVP’s top politicians for infringement of Switzerland's anti-racism laws. Those listed in the proceedings include the SVP’s president Toni Brunner, vice president Christoph Blocher and parliamentary leader Adrian Amstutz.

Maurer now wants to find out how the party arrived at the controversial text.

It is possible that several of those implicated will seek to rely on parliamentary immunity, which prevents a politician from having to answer charges where he can show a link between his work as a parliamentarian and the issue in question.

Christoph Blocher, who is already seeking immunity for his involvement in the affair that led to the resignation of former central bank chief Philipp Hildebrand, will probably not be able to make use of it in this case because he had no parliamentary mandate at the time in question.

David Gibor, the lawyer for the complainants, believes the ad should have immediately been taken down, and is disappointed that it is still visible on the SVP website.

"All members of the initiative committee are well aware of the nationwide outrage and, after the criminal complaint was made, of the potentially criminal content of the advertisement,” Gibor told the newspaper.

Lyssandra Sears (news@thelocal.ch)

Don't miss...X
Left Right

Your comments about this article

2012-04-25 14:36:38 by HoppSuisse
Blaming the victims for violence does not solve anything Asteriks.

Poverty does not excuse violence.
There are many poor people in the world who are not violent.

Peoples who have a different value system then ours should not come here to live with us.
We do not tolerate honor killings of our wives and daughters.
We do not tolerate our children bringing knives to school or solving differences through fighting.
We do not tolerate violence and theft.

Look around you Asteriks, you will see many peoples who have come from many different races to live here with us.
Look at the prisons and see who is filling them up.

All are welcome who will contribute to the society and who will respect our value systems and laws.
All others will be happier returning to their own home lands where they can live in their own value systems.

HoppSuisse
2012-04-25 11:02:58 by asteriks
If Swiss behave normal with immigrants there would be no violent attacks. HoppSuise doesn't speak the truth, equality is far away from Swiss politics, just check working permissions for foreigners/Auslaender. Criminality is result of racism, you refused to give job to immigrants and consequently they had to do something criminal in order to survive. Crowd of immigrants are homeless in Swiss because of racist job market.
2012-04-24 16:59:25 by HoppSuisse
It is not racist to not want to live with people who have a different value system and which is against our values.
Our prisons are full of such peoples (75% sind Auslander).

We highly value life, family, love, freedom, equality, etc .
We do not solve problems with violence, dishonesty, abusing women and children, etc.

We need to have a special investigation into who is behind this political attack on SVP.

HoppSuisse
Today's headlines
Israel's actions 'may be war crimes': Pillay
Navi Pillay. Photo: UNHCR

Israel's actions 'may be war crimes': Pillay

Israel's military actions in the Gaza Strip could amount to war crimes, UN rights chief Navi Pillay said in Geneva on Wednesday, while also condemning indiscriminate rocket attacks by Palestinian militants Hamas. READ  

Wheelchair user killed in station by SBB train
Photo: Sebastian Widmann/AFP/Getty Images

Wheelchair user killed in station by SBB train

An investigation is under way into the death of a man in a wheelchair who was killed on Tuesday by a Swiss Federal Railways (SBB) train travelling through the Roggwil-Wynau train station in the canton of Bern. READ  

Geneva bank CBH snaps up Portuguese interests
Photo: (Detail) AFP

Geneva bank CBH snaps up Portuguese interests

The main shareholder of troubled Banco Espirito Santo (BES) was placed in receivership on Tuesday as Portugal's largest listed lender announced it has sold off the bulk of its private bank based in Switzerland to Compagnie Bancaire Helvétique, a Geneva-based bank. READ  

Palestinian meets Fifa chief over Gaza crisis
FIFA chief Sepp Blatter. Photo: Marcello Casal Jr.

Palestinian meets Fifa chief over Gaza crisis

Fifa chief Sepp Blatter on Tuesday raised the alarm about the spiralling Gaza crisis as he held talks with the head of the Palestinian Football Association. READ  

Hackers exploit 'holes' in Swiss online banking
Photo: Philippe Huguen/AFP/File

Hackers exploit 'holes' in Swiss online banking

Computer hackers are using a “trojan horse” virus to target users of 16 Swiss online banking sites, according to reports from security experts who liken the “holes” in internet banking security to Emmental cheese. READ  

Geneva lawyer named US ambassador to Finland
Charles C. Adams Jr. Photo: Paul Ronga

Geneva lawyer named US ambassador to Finland

President Barack Obama has named Charles C. Adams Jr., a prominent American lawyer and Democratic Party supporter living in Geneva, as US ambassador to Finland. READ  

Strong franc dents Swatch first-half profits
Photo: Swatch

Strong franc dents Swatch first-half profits

Swatch, the world’s biggest watch company, recorded lower profits for the first six months of 2014 compared to the same period a year earlier, as the strong Swiss franc took its toll. READ  

Tax evasion fine soaks Credit Suisse in red ink
Photo: AFP

Tax evasion fine soaks Credit Suisse in red ink

Credit Suisse, Switzerland's second-largest bank, posted an unexpectedly big net second-quarter loss on Tuesday as a huge US tax evasion fine sent it deep into the red. READ  

Nyon's Paléo music festival off to muddy start
Elton John is set to make his first appearance at the Paléo festival. Photo: AFP

Nyon's Paléo music festival off to muddy start

The 39th Paléo music festival, getting under way on Tuesday in Nyon in the canton of Vaud, is struggling with muddy grounds after heavy rain. READ  

Troicki returns from ban with Swiss Open win
Viktor Troicki playing at Wimbledon last year. Photo: Adrian Dennis/AFP

Troicki returns from ban with Swiss Open win

Viktor Troicki made the most of his return to tennis after serving a one-year ban as the Serb defeated Austria's Dominic Thiem 7-6 (7/4), 6-4 on Monday to reach the second round of the Swiss Open in Gstaad. READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
Tech
Switzerland stays on top of innovation rankings for fourth year
Sport
Video of Bern football player's spectacular own goal goes global
National
Roger Federer and Lindsey Vonn play tennis at Jungfraujoch (VIDEOS)
Business & Money
Competition commission launches probe into Swiss car leasing 'fiddle'
Health
Down's syndrome cases in Switzerland more than double
National
American family files hefty lawsuit over deadly Swiss balloon crash
Features
Graubünden's panoramic Bernina Express celebrates rail history
National
Study rates Zurich as world's fifth most expensive city for expats
National
Swiss-based human brain project directors hit back at research critics
Business & Money
Switzerland gets the edge on EU with China free trade agreement
National
Entries for new Swiss national anthem competition swell over 200
National
Zurich-based helicopter firm denies role in Schumacher medical leak
Culture
Montreux Jazz Festival debuts live internet streaming of concerts
Features
Tour of Bern’s historic fountains tells story of Switzerland's capital
National
Swiss media lament football team's 'cruel' and 'bitter' defeat
International
The Local expands its reach with the launch of new website in Denmark
Sport
Jubilant press hails hat-trick hero Shaqiri as 'Swiss Messi'
National
New website study reveals inequality in Swiss disposable income
Travel
Switzerland’s largest ski area 4-Vallées breaks up over lift dispute
National
VIDEO: Zurich Zoo launches contest to name newborn baby elephant
Business & Money
CEO-to-worker pay gap grows at biggest Swiss firms: union study
Culture
VIDEO: Swiss performance artist plans naked stroll at Art Basel
National
Zurich's new rail line and underground station open 'without a hitch'
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

Latest news from The Local in Germany

More news from Germany at thelocal.de

Latest news from The Local in Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

Latest news from The Local in Sweden

More news from Sweden at thelocal.se

2,147
jobs available