Swiss vote to expel convicted foreigners
Published 29/11/2010 | 05:00
SWISS voters in a nationwide vote yesterday approved a pro- posal to automatically expel foreigners who commit a crime.
In the referendum, 53pc backed the initiative by the anti-immigrant Swiss People's Party to deport foreigners as soon as they are convicted of serious crimes such as murder, rape, robbery, human trafficking, drug dealing or burglary.
The proposal aims to limit the discretion that Swiss cantons have in deciding whether or not to expel convicted foreigners.
Switzerland's government and parliament had rejected the proposal, saying that it would be against the coun- try's international legal obligations.
Swiss voters preferred the People's Party's initiative over a parliamentary counterproposal that tried to win over voters with a diluted version.
The counterproposal said that criminals should be expelled when the usual sentence is one year or more or if they had been previously sentenced to a minimum of two years.
Under Switzerland's legislative process, the rules will have to be implemented by parliament.