Switzerland. In a referendum in March, 71% of voters voted to retain the license fee for public service, that is, radio and TV. According to Countryaah.com, Bern is the capital city of Switzerland, a country located in Western Europe. The Swiss equivalent of the Radio Service is called Billag, and the opponents have argued that the licensing fee system is outdated and that it impedes the competitiveness of other media companies. In another referendum, this June, just over 70% of Swiss voted to block foreign gaming sites on the Internet. As of 2019, only gaming companies and casinos registered in Switzerland will be allowed, and this applies not only to the Internet but also purely physically.
Ten people, seven skiers, two climbers and one guide, were killed in May when the Swiss Alps suffered severe weather conditions. Five of them were part of a group of 14 people who failed to reach a mountain cabin in the Pigne d’Arolla area in southern Switzerland west of the Matterhorn mountain peak and were therefore forced to spend the night outdoors.
In August, all 20 people died on board an old propeller aircraft when it crashed in the Swiss Alps. The plane, a Juncker Ju-52 (“Aunt Ju”), was from 1939 and was flown by a company that makes panoramic flights for, for example, tourists.
In Lausanne, in August, a Muslim couple were denied Swiss citizenship because they did not want to shake hands with the opposite sex. The mayor of the city motivated the decision with a lack of respect for equality.
Apple Watch now sells more watches than the entire Swiss watch industry together, and then it’s about brands like Omega, Rolex, Tissot and Swatch. This is what the analysis company Canalys claims, which looked at figures relating to sales during the last quarter of last year.
In November 2009, Switzerland conducted a referendum on banning minarets. The vote had been proposed by the right-wing Swiss People’s Party SVP, while the government advised that such a ban be implemented as it would harm the country’s relationship with the Muslim world. Still, 57% of Swiss voted for a ban, and 22 out of 26 cantons voted in favor. The country was home to 400,000 Muslims, and after Christianity, Islam is the country’s second largest religion, albeit quite hidden. There are only 4 mosques in the country. The night before the vote, the mosque in Geneva was vandalized. Amnesty International declared that the ban was a violation of religious freedom and would probably either be overturned by the country’s Supreme Court or by the European Court of Human Rights.
In September 2010, the fourth woman is elected to the country’s seven-person Federation Council, and before that, the council has a majority of women.
In a new referendum in November 2010, there will be a majority to automatically expel foreigners who have committed “serious crime”.
In January 2011, a former Swiss bank employee is known to have violated the country’s strict banking secrecy laws. He has provided WikiLeaks with a list of wealthy foreigners who have been taxed and saved their fortunes in Switzerland.
In light of the disaster at Japan’s Fukushima nuclear power plant, Switzerland became the first European country in May 2011 to decide to phase out nuclear power. No new works were to be built and worn-out reactors would not be replaced. The last reactor is expected to be commissioned in 2034.
At the October 2011 parliamentary elections, the right-wing SVP goes 2.3% to 26.6%, but remains the country’s largest. The Liberal FDP and Christian Democratic CVP are also each declining just over 2%. In contrast, the Green Liberal Party GLP is up 4% to 5.4%.