Switzerland’s defense minister said it was “unthinkable” that a recently passed referendum to curb immigration in his country would break any accords with the European Union. The outcome of the vote has been criticized as racist, and some argue that it breaks European standards on freedom of movement.
Defense Minister Ueli Maurer’s statement comes just after a top Swiss court Friday found that phrases such as “foreign pig” and “dirty asylum-seeker” do not violate the country’s anti-racism laws.
"The EU and Switzerland both have an interest in coming up with sensible solutions," Maurer, a member of the right-wing Swiss People’s Party (SVP) that spearheaded the proposal for the referendum, told the Schweiz am Sonntag newspaper. "It’s unthinkable that the bilaterals will be terminated, whether by Switzerland or by the EU. Both sides benefit from them."