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CRIME

SVP piles on pressure over foreign criminals

Swiss ministers came under renewed pressure on Friday to pass a law to expel foreign criminals, after far-right party the SVP brought a new referendum on the issue a step closer.

The party has brought forward a new popular initiative, signed by 154,982 people, calling on the government to honour the result of a referendum held in November 2010, newspaper 20 Minutes reports. In that vote, 53 percent of voters backed the compulsory expulsion of foreigners who had committed crimes in Switzerland. The SVP accuses the government, which is obliged to implement the measures, of dragging its feet.

 

The government put two detailed proposals forward in May, but both of these were significantly more lenient than the original proposals – something the government said was necessary to make them compatible with international law. 

 

The new initiative is far more detailed than the original, and if passed would give the government less room for manoeuvre. The text specifies that expulsion of foreigners who committed murder, robbery or rape would be automatic, even on a first offence. Others facing expulsion would include "notorious and incorrigible" offenders whose actions "seriously affect order and public safety," according to Le Matin.

 

"It is high time to act severely against foreign criminality," the party claims in the initiative. "Criminality remains a potent problem. The number of robberies and burglaries is literally exploding in several cantons," it says.

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CRIME

Swiss man kidnapped in Zurich ‘is vaccine commission chief’

A Swiss man briefly abducted last month by a German, before his kidnapper was shot dead by police near Zurich, is the head of Switzerland's federal vaccination commission, local media reported Saturday. 

Swiss man kidnapped in Zurich 'is vaccine commission chief'

The information gives a completely different twist on the case. 

The 38-year-old German had been wanted since March 31 by the authorities after abducting a man in the canton of Zurich. 

The police did not communicate about the case until the German was shot dead this week, and did not give the identity of the abductee. 

But according to several Swiss media outlets, including the Tagesanzeiger daily and the Heidi.news website, the victim of the abduction is the head of the Federal Commission for Vaccinations (CFV). 

The motive for the abduction remains unclear. 

According to the Swiss online news site Watson, the German abductor had been in close contact with conspiracy theorists. 

He was killed on Wednesday night when police tried to arrest him. 

Before being shot and killed he pulled out a gun and killed a 28-year-old woman, believed to be his girlfriend, according to police. 

According to the Swiss news agency ATS, a 34-year-old Swiss man was arrested on Thursday and is believed to be linked to the abduction. 

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