Swiss parliament wants ban on extremist symbols

    WORLD  17 April 2024 - 20:58

    Swiss lawmakers on April 17 voted in favour of banning the display of extremist and racist symbols, starting with those of a Nazi nature.

    The National Council lower house of parliament voted by 133 to 38 in favour of banning the public use of racist, violence-promoting and extremist symbols, such as Nazi symbols, Barron’s reports.

    Switzerland, which stayed neutral during World War II, has come under pressure to fall in line with a number of other European countries in banning Nazi symbols.

    Full bans are in place in Germany, Poland and several other eastern European nations.

    The Swiss parliament as a whole is now in favour, after the Council of States upper house voted for such a ban in December.

    The plans would also cover gestures, words, salutes or flags.

    The National Council also voted by 132 to 40 for the measures to be introduced in stages -- a move the government supports.

    A ban on easily identifiable Nazi symbols could be implemented quickly, while other racist and extremist symbols could be identified and banned further down the line.

    "We don't want a swastika or a Hitler salute in our country, ever!" said Green lawmaker Raphael Mahaim.

    "Today, in Switzerland, it is possible, it is even permitted, to display a flag with a swastika on your balcony. It is possible to put a flag bearing the image of the SS on the windshield of your car. It is possible to give the Hitler salute in public spaces.

    Caliber.Az

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