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Today in Switzerland: A round-up of the latest news on Tuesday

Helena Bachmann in Geneva
Helena Bachmann in Geneva - [email protected] • 13 Apr, 2021 Updated Tue 13 Apr 2021 07:43 CEST
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Illustration shows letter boxes from Swiss Post 21 March 2006 in Genolier. AFP PHOTO FABRICE COFFRINI (Photo by FABRICE COFFRINI / AFP)

Find out what's going on in Switzerland today with The Local's short round-up of the news.

New coronavirus treatment is on the horizon

Swiss pharmaceutical giant, Roche, announced that its antibody "cocktail", REGN-COV2, developed in collaboration with the American company Regeneron, reduces symptomatic cases by 81 percent.

"While vaccinations are accelerating globally, there are still unmet needs when it comes to preventing Covid infections”, according to Levi Garraway, Roche’s Chief Medical Officer.

There is no timeline yet for when this medication could become available, but the latest findings will soon be presented to regulatory bodies for authorisation.

Zurich "erases" racism from public spaces

Municipal authorities have decided to rid the city of all texts and images that could be interpreted as racist or offensive.

"Racism does not manifest itself only in concrete acts, but also in the way something is perceived. And since these images and words are perceived in an offensive way, we remove them", said Christof Meier, director of Zurich’s Integration Office.

Messages judged as racist are removed from public spaces, but Meier said the city is also talking to with private entities, trying to convince them to follow suit.

READ MORE: How do the Swiss really feel about foreigners?

Serious reactions from Covid vaccines are rare in Switzerland

Drug regulatory agency, Swissmedic, investigated 1,174 reports of suspected adverse reactions to Pfizer / Biontech and Moderna vaccines administered in Switzerland.

Overall, it found that serious adverse reactions are rare, and most reported side effects are mild and temporary.

They  “do not change the positive benefit-risk ratio of Covid vaccines”, the agency said.

The Local will publish an article today about the most common side effects to the Covid-19 vaccine in Switzerland.

Postal service loses a Rolex watch

An 8,000-franc watch, which was purchased on a Swiss online auction site and shipped to its owner by mail, mysteriously “disappeared” somewhere between Fribourg and Sedrun (GR).

Packed in three nested boxes, it couldn’t have fallen out, Swiss public broadcaster SRF reported.

The mystery deepened as an internal postal document revealed that 120 grams  — exactly the weight of the watch — disappeared from the package between midnight in the Frauenfeld distribution centre and  3am in the Untervaz distribution center.

Based on this evidence, the owner suspects that a postal employee stole the watch and sent the empty package onward.

However, postal service denies any wrongdoing.

“I find it extremely unfortunate that the post office is actively looking the other way, even though they have a thief in their midst”, the watch’s owner said.

If you have any questions about life in Switzerland, ideas for articles or news tips for The Local, please get in touch with us at [email protected]





Helena Bachmann in Geneva 2021/04/13 07:43

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