Monday, 24 October 2011

Anti-Immigrant Party Loses Ground in Switzerland

Big Peace.com



From 2007: Anti-immigration election poster, declared "racist" by opponents, depicts white sheep kicking a black sheep away from a Swiss flag, with the caption, "Establish your security."
From 2007: Anti-immigration election poster, declared “racist” by opponents, depicts white sheep kicking a black sheep away from a Swiss flag, with the caption, “Establish your security.”

For the first time in four years, Switzerland’s major anti-immigrant party has lost ground. In elections on Sunday, support for the Swiss People’s Party (SVP) fell by more than 2 points to 26.8%, instead of growing to more than 30% as party leaders had predicted. The party rose to fame in 2007 when it got 29% of the vote on an anti-immigrant campaign that the United Nations described as “racist.” In 2009, the SVP shocked Europe by backing a referendum forbidding the building of minarets. (See “Switzerland shocks itself by passing a ban on minarets.”) Sunday’s election indicates that, for the first time, the xenophobic fervor may be starting to retreat, as other issues, particularly the growing financial crisis, threaten to overwhelm Europe. Independent and SwissInfo

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