Swiss far-right SVP vote share dips amid green surge

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The far-right SVP is projected to lose seven seats in Switzerland's elections Sunday, as an SVP breakaway group and the relatively new Green Liberals enjoy a surge, national television estimated.

The Conservative Democratic Party (BDP), which broke away from the Swiss People's Party (SVP), is projected to win nine seats, the Green Liberals to gain nine, while the SVP looks to have lost seven seats.

Sunday's polls mark the first time in 20 years that the SVP recorded a drop in support.

In 2003, the party obtained 26.6 percent of votes case. At the last elections that improved to 28.9 percent, the highest for any Swiss party since the introduction of the proportional representation system in 1919.

However, the rupture with the BDP, considered to be more moderate, split its votes.

In addition, the Green Liberals also hurt the SVP, taking seats from the far-right party on the back of concerns over the future of nuclear energy that surfaced after Japan's Fukushima accident.

© 2011 AFP

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