Central procurement of war material – Parliament rejects ban on weapons funding from the people’s initiative against the financing of war material no hearing in Bern, as the vote in the Small chamber proves also.2 Kommentare2Das Parliament, the people’s initiative recommends against the financing of war material to the rejection. (KEYSTONE/Anthony Anex/archives)

According to the national Council and the Council of States decided on Monday to recommend that the popular initiative against the financing of war material to the rejection. Also an indirect counter-proposal does not want to the Small chamber. The Initiative does not lead to more world peace, as the founders wish it, “is ineffective in this regard”, said Thierry Burkart (FDP/AG), on behalf of the security-political Commission.

The Initiative aims to prohibit the financing of war material manufacturers in the world. Specifically, the Swiss national Bank (SNB), and foundations and institutions of the state and occupational Pension should no longer be allowed to Finance company if they generate more than five percent of their sales from the manufacture of war material.

The funding prohibition was but barely, said Burkart. In addition, the term “war material producer” is ambiguous and that the Limit of five percent was arbitrary. The Initiative would further weaken the state Pension, the Swiss industrial and financial center. Also, the independence of the Swiss national Bank would take damage. The Council followed this line of reasoning with 32 votes to 13.

appeal to ethics

the government is Also against the Initiative. They have no effect, said Minister of economy, Guy Parmelin. He also stressed that there is already a ban on financing of nuclear, biological and chemical weapons as well as cluster munitions and Anti-personnel mines.

with the Initiative, many companies would be made, which have nothing to do with war material – such as glass Trösch. The company produces a normal window, but also those, which are installed in aircraft cockpits.

For the Initiative fought a Céline Cara (NE/Green) led minority had. They consider the current funding ban as a gap and appeal to the ethical responsibility.

prohibition of Financing for development

For an indirect counter-proposal Daniel Jositsch (SP/ZH) put into the stuff. “The Initiative is really going a bit far,” said Jositsch. Currently there is a ban on the direct financing of weapons of war.

Today, but could be a workaround, a loophole used to reach an indirect financing. This loophole should be closed with the counter-proposal. Specifically, the prohibition of indirect financing of prohibited weapons will be extended to all cases in which the development, manufacture or acquisition of prohibited war material is funded. This, too, the Council rejected, with a 31 to 14 vote.

The national Council had already spoken out in the spring session against Initiative and counter-proposal, and the same minorities gebodigt.

The Initiative comes from the pen of the group for a Switzerland without an army (Gsoa) and the young Greens. In a opinions Gsoa and Young Green have been disappointed by the downcast decision. They were confident, however, that this will be corrected at the ballot box.


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