Switzerland plans to systematically expel Russian diplomatic spies

Switzerland plans to systematically expel Russian diplomatic spies
Switzerland plans to systematically expel Russian diplomatic spies

A high number of Russian intelligence agents in Switzerland, the allegedly leaked details of the Bürgenstock conference, and the Greens who want to bring expanded and equal parental leave to Swiss voters make the headlines in the Sunday press.

A view of the four copies of the Sunday newspapers, with the Sonntags Zeitung, the Sonntags Blick, Le Matin Dimanche and the NZZ am Sonntag (archives).

KEYSTONE/JEAN-CHRISTOPHE BOTT

Towards the expulsion of Russian spies in Switzerland

Switzerland is the country in Europe that hosts the most Russian intelligence agents accredited as diplomats. Tolerated by Berne until now, this could change, report Matin Dimanche and SonntagsZeitung. Federal parliamentarians discussed a text with sensitive content last September in Lucerne. The motion from National Councilor Fabian Molina (PS/ZH) calls for “systematically expelling Russian spies and other foreign spies”, especially those who act in Switzerland under diplomatic cover.

Federal Councilor Ignazio Cassis and a representative of the Federal Intelligence Service (SRC) had opposing opinions on the subject. The first asked to reject the text, the second contradicted it. Despite opposition from the Minister of Foreign Affairs, the Federal Council approved the motion which the Council of States will consider on Monday, recalls the SonntagsZeitung.

Moscow releases results of Bürgenstock conference

Russian secret services have reportedly leaked the draft final declaration of the Bürgenstock (NW) conference on Ukraine. According to this document, the participants in this summit should approve nine of the ten points of the peace plan presented by Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky. This was stated by a Kremlin spokeswoman who cited the document, reports SonntagsZeitung.

According to the newspaper, the intention behind the Russian leak is clear: Moscow wants to show that the conference is a “farce”, because the outcome is already known. The Federal Department of Foreign Affairs declined to comment.

The OFJ against fossil fuel power plants

The Federal Office of Justice (FOJ) considers that the construction of new fossil fuel power plants is unconstitutional. Indeed, according to the Federal Constitution, the Confederation can “neither operate electricity production facilities itself, nor call for tenders or mandate the construction of new production facilities,” he writes in a consulted position statement. by the NZZ am Sonntag.

It is impossible to establish federal regulations on the financing of new power plants and their decommissioning. Federal Councilor Albert Rösti did not respond to these objections.

Maghreb asylum seekers often without papers

More than 90% of asylum seekers from the Maghreb did not present identity documents for their request. Sometimes people have their identity documents sent to them afterwards, the State Secretariat for Migration told the NZZ am Sonntag.

Many asylum seekers falsely state that they are from Libya. And this is quickly discovered: they know almost nothing about the country or do not speak the dialect. According to the newspaper, around 4,000 asylum seekers arrived in Switzerland last year from the Maghreb states, namely Algeria, Morocco and Tunisia.

The Greens want expanded parental leave

The Greens want to bring their demand for expanded and equal parental leave to Swiss voters. For both parents, parental leave must be longer than 14 weeks, party chairwoman Lisa Mazzone asked in an interview with NZZ am Sonntag.

By international comparison, 30 weeks of parental leave per couple would still be modest, Lisa Mazzone said. In the past, the Greens have repeatedly called for the extension of parental leave. For the party, it is important that there is a parity model. This should make it possible to overcome traditional roles and allow women to have a higher employment rate in the labor market.

Migros cooperatives spared from job cuts

The job cuts announced by Migros do not concern regional cooperatives. The latter informed the NZZ am Sonntag that there were currently no plans to cut jobs in connection with the activities of the Migros supermarkets. Only because of specialized markets could there be adaptations at the regional level.

Observers and industry insiders, however, are unanimous: if Migros wants to become more agile, the savings made at the plant will not be enough, the newspaper further reports. The financial situation of regional cooperatives remains poor, writes SonntagsZeitung.

More freedom of clothing at Denner

Denner has relaxed its dress code. Since November 2023, employees can wear black religious head coverings, reports SonntagsBlick. The face must remain visible. According to the newspaper, Aldi and Lidl employees can wear religious head coverings such as a scarf or turban in the Swiss subsidiaries. At Coop and Migros, all headgear remains prohibited for employees in contact with customers.

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