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April 25, 2017

Archives:

14 Year Old Child Bride Facing Death Penalty for Murdering Husband -

Saturday, November 29, 2014

BREAKING: New Coal Disaster In West Virginia -

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

U.S. Hostage Freed by Colombia’s FARC Rebels (Video) -

Monday, October 28, 2013

Here’s Why The Zimmerman Verdict Matters -

Sunday, July 14, 2013

BREAKING! UK Government Spied On Allies At TWO G20 Summits (Video) -

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Swiss Support Tougher Asylum Legislation as Refugee Numbers Spike -

Monday, June 10, 2013

American Woman Killed in Syria Fighting for Terrorists, Syrian TV Claims (Video) -

Friday, May 31, 2013

CO2 in the Air Reached its Highest Level in Human History -

Friday, May 10, 2013

Terms of the New Abortion Bill Agreed by Irish Cabinet -

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Boston In Lockdown As Manhunt Intensifies -

Friday, April 19, 2013

2 Dead, Dozens Injured After Boston Marathon Bombing -

Monday, April 15, 2013

Fast Food Workers in New York Stage Surprise Strike -

Saturday, April 6, 2013

N. Korean Rhetoric Provokes Missile Shield Deployment -

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Eyewitness Accounts from Meiktila Massacre -

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Sudan to Free All Political Prisoners -

Monday, April 1, 2013

A New Free Press In Burma Juxtaposed With Genocide: The World Will Be Watching -

Friday, March 29, 2013

Pressure Builds to End Ethnic Violence in Myanmar -

Friday, March 29, 2013

Activists Demand Action As Further Genocide Looms -

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Cyprus Reaches Last-Minute Bailout Deal With EU -

Monday, March 25, 2013

Myanmar Muslims Brace for Possible Genocide -

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Swiss Support Tougher Asylum Legislation as Refugee Numbers Spike

In a referendum on Sunday June 9, Swiss voters have overwhelmingly backed government’s move to tighten asylum restrictions, while the number of refugees in the country has spiked. Human rights activists who had hoped the vote would reject the laws that sparked the referendum. Instead, almost 80 percent of voters gave it the green light.

After this vote people won’t be able to seek asylum through Swiss embassies anymore – which had been unique in Europe. Military desertion is no longer considered a valid reason to be granted asylum. Military desertion has been the key reason cited by Eritreans, who accounted for most applications to Switzerland last year and whose country imposes unlimited and under-paid military service on all able-bodied men and women.

Switzerland’s number of refugees, relative to its population, is double the European average, and asylum applications are at their highest level in a decade.

The country currently counts some 48,000 people in the process of seeking asylum, including 28,631 who arrived in 2012. The surge marks the highest number since the height of the Balkans War in 1999, when nearly 48,000 people sought refuge in the country. This is attributed in part to the Arab Spring uprisings.

Swiss justice minister Simonetta Sommaruga has insisted that the changes largely benefit the asylum seekers themselves, highlighting especially the efforts to speed up the application process.

Opponents of the laws say it means people unable to make the often dangerous journey from their country to Switzerland would remain without help.

This asylum law also clears the way for the creation of special centers for asylum seekers considered to be trouble-makers, which could limit the right to family reunification to spouses and children.

Parliamentarian Celine Amandruz said:

“This marks a weakening of our humanitarian tradition.”

The scale of the limits has shocked Human Rights advocates.

“The referendum is a disaster for asylum seekers and refugees and leaves no winners,” the committee that had requested the vote on the changes said in a statement, hailing the “minority of the population that still has a conscience”.

“We knew in advance that we would lose,” said Manon Schick, the head of Amnesty International’s Switzerland section, pointing out that the Swiss have repeatedly voted to tighten their asylum law since it went into effect in 1981.

Only 39 per cent of the 5.2 million people eligible to vote cast their ballot, but low turnout is not uncommon in Switzerland, which hosts numerous popular votes each year.

(Translation: Solidarity without borders)

(Translation: Solidarity without borders)

Clarissa Frankfurt (20 Posts)

Clarissa Frankfurt is a law student at the University of Fribourg in Switzerland. While her country of origin is Switzerland, she has also lived in America for 4 years and in Germany for 3 years. Her Master studies are concentrated on International law and Human Rights, as well as Diplomacy. When she’s not studying, you can find Clarissa online blogging about politics, mainly American politics, social issues such as Women’s Rights and equality for the LGBT community, Democracy and Human Rights (http://tocareornottocare2012.wordpress.com/). Offline, you can find Clarissa playing the violine in the university orchestra, teaching English, taking part in Model UNs (...MUN) or fanatically shooting hoops.