Swiss approve stricter asylum law: early results
The Swiss voted overwhelmingly on Sunday in favour of a government move to tighten the country's asylum law after a spike in refugees, according to a forecast by the public broadcaster based on early results.
Shortly after polling stations closed at 1000 GMT, broadcaster SSR forecast that 79 percent had embraced changes made to the asylum law last September as applications soared to their hightest level in over a decade.
The forecast, which had a margin of error of 3.0 points, was based on a complete tally in nine of Switzerland’s 23 cantons which resoundingly gave their stamp of approval to the revisions, which include removing military desertion from a list of valid grounds for seeking asylum in Switzerland.
On the second of four Sundays set aside this year for popular votes on national, regional and local issues, an overwhelming 76 percent of Swiss voters meanwhile rejected an initiative for the people to elect their government directly instead of it being chosen by parliament, according to the SSR forecast.
Final results were expected by late afternoon.