Skip to navigation
Skip to main content
January 1995 Volume 2 Number 1
Switzerland to Detain Aliens
Swiss voters on December 4 voted 73 to 27 percent to empower Swiss authorities to imprison unwanted migrants for up to a year. All 26 cantons approved the measure to deal with the estimated 200,000 illegal aliens in the country. Over 80 percent of the voters in Zurich, the scene of recent clashes between Albanian Kosovar and Lebanese drugs gangs, approved the measure.<< back
The police will be permitted to detain migrants or asylum- seekers who do not have adequate identity documents--initially for three months, extendible to one year if it takes that long to determine their identity and to carry out their repatriation. Opponents complained that the campaign convinced many Swiss that most foreigners are involved with illegal drug activities.
Edward Luce, Swiss Vote To Jail Illegal Incomers, The Guardian, December 5, 1994, 11; "Swiss Ballot: Jail Unwanted Aliens?" International Herald Tribune, December 3, 1994.