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SWI swissinfo.ch – the international service of the Swiss Broadcasting Corporation (SBC). Since 1999, swissinfo.ch has fulfilled the federal government’s mandate to distribute information about Switzerland internationally, supplementing the online offerings of the radio and television stations of the SBC. Today, the international service is directed above all at an international audience interested in Switzerland, as well as at Swiss citizens living abroad.

Videos by Swissinfo

The Swiss army: your questions answered Part 7

In Switzerland, all able-bodied men complete compulsory military service, while others opt for a civilian service. But how useful is a conscript army in light of what Russia did to Ukraine? This is one of many questions SWI readers sent to us. Daniel Reist, head of media relations for the Swiss armed forces, takes a shot at answering them.

Our seventh question and the last in our series is: why are women not conscripted in Switzerland?


swissinfo.ch is the international branch of the Swiss Broadcasting Corporation (SBC). Its role is to report on Switzerland and to provide a Swiss perspective on international events.

For more articles, interviews and videos visit swissinfo.ch or subscribe to our YouTube channel:

Website: http://www.swissinfo.ch
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The Swiss army: your questions answered Part 6

In Switzerland, all able-bodied men complete compulsory military service, while others opt for a civilian service. But how useful is a conscript army in light of what Russia did to Ukraine? This is one of many questions SWI readers sent to us. Daniel Reist, head of media relations for the Swiss armed forces, takes a shot at answering them.

Our sixth question is: are Swiss soldiers being used as free labour?

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More questions and answers are to follow in the coming weeks. —
swissinfo.ch is the international branch of the Swiss Broadcasting Corporation (SBC). Its role is to report on Switzerland and to provide a Swiss perspective on international events.

For more articles, interviews and videos visit swissinfo.ch or subscribe to our YouTube channel:

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The Swiss army: your questions answered Part 5

In Switzerland, all able-bodied men complete compulsory military service, while others opt for a civilian service. But how useful is a conscript army in light of what Russia did to Ukraine? This is one of many questions SWI readers sent to us. Daniel Reist, head of media relations for the Swiss armed forces, takes a shot at answering them.

Our fifth question is: what would the army do if there was a nuclear war?

More questions and answers are to follow in the coming weeks.


swissinfo.ch is the international branch of the Swiss Broadcasting Corporation (SBC). Its role is to report on Switzerland and to provide a Swiss perspective on international events.

For more articles, interviews and videos visit swissinfo.ch or subscribe to our YouTube channel:

Website:

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The Swiss army: your questions answered Part 4

In Switzerland, all able-bodied men complete compulsory military service, while others opt for a civilian service. But how useful is a conscript army in light of what Russia did to Ukraine? This is one of many questions SWI readers sent to us. Daniel Reist, head of media relations for the Swiss armed forces, takes a shot at answering them.

Our fourth question is: how can a neutral country have an army?

More questions and answers are to follow in the coming weeks.


swissinfo.ch is the international branch of the Swiss Broadcasting Corporation (SBC). Its role is to report on Switzerland and to provide a Swiss perspective on international events.

For more articles, interviews and videos visit swissinfo.ch or subscribe to our YouTube channel:

Website: http://www.swissinfo.ch

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Large Hadron Collider restart at CERN

The Large Hadron Collider (LHC) is back. Scientists are again firing proton beams at nearly the speed of light around its 27-kilometre loop as they resume their search for clues to the origins of the universe.

After three years of maintenance work, the world’s biggest particle accelerator, located at the CERN particle physics laboratory near Geneva, has started its third operational cycle, officials said this week. The increased amount of energy used this time is expected to lead to greater precision and discovery potential than ever before.

The ramping up of the energy and intensity of the beams in the upgraded collider coincides with the tenth anniversary of the LHC’s landmark discovery of the Higgs Boson particle, a long-sought fundamental particle that gives mass to other subatomic

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Swiss conference on Ukraine’s recovery

An international conference on reconstructing post-war Ukraine is being held in the Swiss city of Lugano.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky addressed the conference by video link. He said, “Russia’s war is not just an attempt to take our country, but a challenge to the European system. The reconstruction of Ukraine is therefore not just a local matter, but the task of the entire democratic world.”

The two-day event had already been scheduled before the Russian invasion began in February. Several international politicians, including European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen, are participating. Ukraine’s Prime Minister Denys Shmyhal is also there, along with several members of the Ukrainian parliament.

On the sidelines, Swiss Environment Minister Simonetta Sommaruga signed

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The Swiss army: your questions answered Part 3

In Switzerland, all able-bodied men complete compulsory military service, while others opt for a civilian service. But how useful is a conscript army in light of what Russia did to Ukraine? This is one of many questions SWI readers sent to us. Daniel Reist, head of media relations for the Swiss armed forces, takes a shot at answering them.

Our third question is: why does Switzerland need an army?

More questions and answers are to follow in the coming weeks.


swissinfo.ch is the international branch of the Swiss Broadcasting Corporation (SBC). Its role is to report on Switzerland and to provide a Swiss perspective on international events.

For more articles, interviews and videos visit swissinfo.ch or subscribe to our YouTube channel:

Website: http://www.swissinfo.ch

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A glimpse into the origins of the universe

The James Webb Space Telescope, which lifted off into the heavens in December 2021, is on the hunt for distant galaxies, faint comets and early star formations. A key component of the telescope was part-developed in Switzerland.

The Webb, the biggest and most powerful telescope ever sent into space, is considered as the successor to the Hubble telescope launched in 1990 by NASA. However, while the Hubble captures images in the spectrum visible to the human eye, the Webb can see further in both space and time – largely thanks to the Mid-Infrared Instrument (MIRI), one of four scientific instruments on board. MIRI, developed with the help of Swiss researchers, can peer into the wavelength range from 5 to 28 microns – a mid-infrared range under-researched to date, and within which it’s

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The Swiss army: your questions answered Part 2

In Switzerland, all able-bodied men complete compulsory military service, while others opt for a civilian service. But how useful is a conscript army in light of what Russia did to Ukraine? This is one of many questions SWI readers sent to us. Daniel Reist, head of media relations for the Swiss armed forces, takes a shot at answering them.

Our second question is how would Switzerland defend itself, faced with a large-scale attack?

swissinfo.ch is the international branch of the Swiss Broadcasting Corporation (SBC). Its role is to report on Switzerland and to provide a Swiss perspective on international events.

For more articles, interviews and videos visit swissinfo.ch or subscribe to our YouTube channel:

Website: http://www.swissinfo.ch
Channel:

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True Story Award 2020/21

On Friday, June 24 2022, the winners of the True Story Award 2020/21 will be announced at the Kornhausforum Bern.

Tune in here at 7pm CET (UTC +2) to find out who has won.


swissinfo.ch is the international branch of the Swiss Broadcasting Corporation (SBC). Its role is to report on Switzerland and to provide a Swiss perspective on international events.

For more articles, interviews and videos visit swissinfo.ch or subscribe to our YouTube channel:

Website: http://www.swissinfo.ch
Channel: http://www.youtube.com/swissinfovideos
Subscribe: http://www.youtube.com/subscription_center?add_user=swissinfovideos

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Ukrainian students adjust to life in Switzerland

The Lucerne School of Art and Design has taken in 29 Ukrainian students as exchange students rather than refugees. This means their time in Switzerland counts towards their degree.

The 29 students come from the Lviv National Academy of Arts, a partner university. They came by bus via Warsaw, Poland, and then through Germany and on to Lucerne shortly after the war started in Ukraine.

Monika Gold, head of the Bachelor’s Programme in Graphic Design, was the driving force behind the move. Her own grandparents emigrated to Switzerland from what is now Ukraine and she has more than 20 years’ contact with the Lviv National Academy of Arts.

“A few days after the war broke out, I contacted the director there and asked if we could help," she told Swiss public television SRF.

The 29 students are

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The Swiss army: your questions answered Part 1

In Switzerland, all able-bodied men complete compulsory military service, while others opt for a civilian service. But how useful is a conscript army in light of what Russia did to Ukraine? This is one of many questions SWI readers sent to us. Daniel Reist, head of media relations for the Swiss armed forces, takes a shot at answering them.

Our first question is can a small army be effective? More questions and answers are to follow in the coming weeks.


swissinfo.ch is the international branch of the Swiss Broadcasting Corporation (SBC). Its role is to report on Switzerland and to provide a Swiss perspective on international events.

For more articles, interviews and videos visit swissinfo.ch or subscribe to our YouTube channel:

Website: http://www.swissinfo.ch
Channel:

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24 hours inside a new Swiss prison

Over 800 people volunteered to be locked up in a Zurich prison last month to test the new facility. SWI swissinfo.ch reporter May Elmahdi-Lichtsteiner was one of the lucky inmates selected for the trial.

The Zurich cantonal authorities recently came up with the unusual idea to give the detention facility and staff a test run before the prison starts taking real inmates.

The pilot project was intended as a good way of “ensuring the proper functioning of daily operations and allowing wardens to familiarise themselves with the facility”, according to the authorities. May stayed for 24 hours before being released.

The new Zurich West prison was built partly to alleviate criticism of conditions for remand prisoners in the canton.


swissinfo.ch is the international branch of the Swiss

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Interview with Yello, the techno and synth-pop music pioneers from Zurich

Hailed as pioneers of synth-pop and techno music and still filling halls in the wake of a career spanning four decades, the Zurich duo has just won the Swiss Grand Award for Music. Speaking to SWI swissinfo.ch, they explain the secret to success: not to care about success at all.

Boris Blank is the musical brains, but he confesses that he can’t read a score. Dieter Meier is the singer who learned how to sing on the job. Together they are Yello, probably the most globally successful and influential Swiss band in history. These two assumed dilettantes couldn’t be more different from each other – Boris, the shy genius behind the group’s unique samples, and Dieter the lyricist and front man, who also doubles as a business maverick, bohemian, conceptual artist, and gambler.

Yello has so

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Episode 2: The fondue invasion

The new episode of our "Switzerland says sorry" series tells the unbelievable story of how Switzerland «invented» fondue as a way to get rid of all the surplus cheese it produced but was unable to sell otherwise. The video gives a short insight into the Swiss Cheese Union, a mafia-like cheese cartel responsible for price-fixing, bribery and flooding the world with melted cheese.

«Switzerland Says Sorry» is a work of satire.
Written, performed and produced by Swiss comedian Karpi
Music by artlist.io
Produced by Apéro Film in 2022 for SWI swissinfo.ch

If you want to know more about the Swiss Cheese Union, check out my sources:

«Swiss Cheese» by Dominik Flammer & Fabian Scheffold (book about the history of Swiss cheesemaking)

«The Fondue Conspiracy» Planet Money (podcast episode

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Afghan women footballers take to the field again in Bern

Two former players with Afghanistan’s national women’s team have started football training for women in Bern, both to improve their footballing skills and to defend the rights of women to play the game. It’s part of Armisa and Sahar’s (pseudonyms) continuing efforts to rebuild their lives after being forced to flee their country for fear of the Taliban, the Islamic fundamentalist group that was waging an insurgency in Afghanistan when they left.

swissinfo.ch is the international branch of the Swiss Broadcasting Corporation (SBC). Its role is to report on Switzerland and to provide a Swiss perspective on international events.

For more articles, interviews and videos visit swissinfo.ch or subscribe to our YouTube channel:

Website: http://www.swissinfo.ch
Channel:

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Saying no to a tax on streaming companies in Switzerland

Should streaming services like Netflix be forced to support filmmakers in the countries where they operate? Under the the so-called “Lex Netflix” law, they will be required to invest 4% of their Swiss turnover in local productions.
The youth wings of Switzerland’s major centre right and rightwing political parties have criticised the law and collected enough signatures to force a national referendum on May 15. They fear the law could drive up subscription prices for streaming services and that less content will be available because of the higher costs for the providers.

swissinfo.ch is the international branch of the Swiss Broadcasting Corporation (SBC). Its role is to report on Switzerland and to provide a Swiss perspective on international events.

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Upmarket Swiss hotel welcomes Ukrainian refugees

The four-star SeePark Hotel in the lakeside town of Murten in western Switzerland has opened its doors to refugees from the war in Ukraine. They get to stay for free in rooms that would normally cost more than CHF200 ($214) a night. The hotel is owned by a limited company of ethnic Russians based in western Europe. The hotel administrator, Ukrainian-born Lyudmyla Rigert, persuaded the director to help her compatriots fleeing the war. So far, 200 refugees from Ukraine have stayed there. But Liza from Krematorsk says she is still in shock and not yet able to appreciate the beauty of the place.

swissinfo.ch is the international branch of the Swiss Broadcasting Corporation (SBC). Its role is to report on Switzerland and to provide a Swiss perspective on international events.

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The birth of modern democracy in the heart of Europe

The "Swiss Revolution" brought democracy to Switzerland. It was an uprising against the aristocracy – and the beginning of a long journey that the country could only complete with foreign help.

On a spring day in 1798, Peter Ochs of Basel declared the birth of the Helvetic Republic from a balcony of the Aarau city hall. There was great rejoicing on the streets because this marked the liberation of the central territories from their Bernese masters.

Two democratic innovations of the Helvetic Republic stand out, and they also influenced the emergence of other democracies:

In 1799, the first assemblies of active male citizens were established.

The second experiment concerned the first national referendum. It was introduced on the occasion of the 1802 revision of the constitution. The

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Episode 1: Follow the Monet – the Bührle art collection

In our new satirical format, we explore this ambivalence and say "sorry" to the world – for minor and major transgressions.

Realised and developed by Swiss comedian, writer and director Patrick Karpiczenko, the segments are intended to inform and entertain, especially on social media.

The first episode discusses the new museum built by the city of Zurich to display the art collection of controversial arms dealer Emil Bührle – a collection whose legitimate acquisition during the Second World War is in doubt. What many experts consider insufficient provenance research has become a PR disaster for the politically left-leaning city.

swissinfo.ch is the international branch of the Swiss Broadcasting Corporation (SBC). Its role is to report on Switzerland and to provide a Swiss

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Switzerland’s S permit for refugees from Ukraine

People fleeing the war in Ukraine will be granted an S permit upon arrival in Switzerland. It’s the first time this permit will be issued since its introduction in 1999.

The protection status "S" was created following the Balkan conflicts in the 1990s but it was never used until now. It allows refugees to live and work in Switzerland for a year with an option to extend if necessary.

Over 6,000 Ukrainians have registered with Swiss authorities since the outbreak of the war on February 24. The United Nations says more than 2.5 million people have fled Ukraine since the war started. The majority have travelled to Poland.

Between 50,000-60,000 Ukrainians could seek protection in Switzerland, according to Swiss justice minister Karin Keller-Sutter. The government said it had allocated

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A microbiome backup for our health

The microbial diversity that is crucial for our health is threatened worldwide by urbanisation. The project "The Microbiota Vault" aims to create a biobank for the whole world.

The microbiome is part of our metabolic system and has a significant influence on human health. The gut microbiome is thought to have many important functions in addition to processing ingested food, including synthesising essential vitamins, fighting inflammation and displacing pathogens. "The Microbiota Vault" aims to preserve this important human microbial diversity for posterity.

In an initial pilot phase, different stool samples from people at the University Hospital Basel will be collected, sequenced and stored. In a later phase, bacteria found in animals, plants and fermented foods will be added. The

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Understanding ESG Bonds and Their Use Cases

Interest in ESG bonds has been steadily growing these past years, as investors seek to align their portfolios to climate and social goals like those featured in the Paris Agreement.

There are different types of ESG bonds depending on their end goal: either directly support a project, or support a company in reaching general corporate targets. Green bonds, like social and sustainability ones, belong to the first type. Sustainability-linked bonds to the latter.

Clear guidelines to gauge the credibility of the issued bonds do not yet exist: critics on the real impact of ESG investing are being raised.

swissinfo.ch is the international branch of the Swiss Broadcasting Corporation (SBC). Its role is to report on Switzerland and to provide a Swiss perspective on international events.

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Empowering linguistic diversity in newsrooms

SWI swissinfo.ch is a team of journalists producing content in ten languages for an international audience. This multilingual work environment is inspiring and enriching but also comes with its special challenges. Take a look behind the scenes in our video and hear directly from our staff members about how they work.

The employees of SWI swissinfo.ch come from many parts of the world. Around 15 languages are spoken across our departments. Our journalists’ perspectives and cultural backgrounds are correspondingly diverse. This opens up new opportunities when researching and monitoring the important issues and debates around the world.

SWI swissinfo.ch benefits from this diversity not just in the production of content but also in making it accessible in other languages. Not all stories

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Switzerland and the EU: close, but not too close

The European Union assumed that Switzerland would one day join the club. But, if anything, the Alpine country in the heart of Europe is moving further and further away. It has no intention of joining. The EU considers Switzerland a troublesome country. In 1992 it said no to the European Economic Area. In 2021 it unilaterally broke off negotiations on a framework agreement with the EU. It says “Yes, gladly!” to economic cooperation, but “No, thanks!” to more political integration or membership. Some people say Switzerland’s wealth and stability are part of the reason for its reluctance to jump on the EU bandwagon. But that’s not the whole story.

swissinfo.ch is the international branch of the Swiss Broadcasting Corporation (SBC). Its role is to report on Switzerland and to provide a

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Swiss women in space

Far more men have been to space than women. The European Space Agency is recruiting and would be happy to hire females. To be considered, you need a master’s degree in a STEM subject (science, technology, engineering and mathematics), a medicine degree or a pilot’s license. The problem is that many girls in school consider STEM subjects to be a male domain.⁠ One Swiss woman who may have the right stuff is Deborah Müller, an engineer and manager at the space company RUAG. She has applied for astronaut training with ESA and if successful she could become a great role model for other women in Switzerland.⁠

swissinfo.ch is the international branch of the Swiss Broadcasting Corporation (SBC). Its role is to report on Switzerland and to provide a Swiss perspective on international events.

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Gaming influencer on Twitch

Millions of people watch others play games on live streaming portals. One of the biggest gaming platforms is Twitch. It’s where you can find Stefanie "Stefy" Holenweg. Under the name "8bitblonde", she is one of the best-known Twitch users in Switzerland.

She gives us a glimpse into her world, which is not just about games but also about social encounters. Private topics, such as heartbreak, are also discussed in her community. Stefy sees this as one of the advantages of the medium: In the stream, participants can decide how much they want to reveal about themselves.

This video portrait is the third in the “Digital offensive” series by Swiss public television SRF. It looks at the work of five young people trying to make a difference in the digital world. (SRF/swissinfo.ch).

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Swiss vote on animal testing ban

On February 13, the Swiss will vote for the fourth time on whether to ban animal testing in this country. The people’s initiative calls for a halt to all experiments on humans and animals and a ban on the import of new products developed using such methods. About 556,000 animals were used for experimental purposes in Switzerland last year, according to official statistics. That’s a decrease of 18% relative to 2015, when the downhill trend started. However, around 1,400 more animals were subjected to degree 3 experiments (+7.8%), tests that cause severe pain to the animals.

swissinfo.ch is the international branch of the Swiss Broadcasting Corporation (SBC). Its role is to report on Switzerland and to provide a Swiss perspective on international events.

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Clamping down on tobacco advertising

Swiss voters will decide on February 13 on a wide ban on tobacco advertising, aimed at protecting young people. Switzerland, home to the world’s largest cigarette companies, has some of the weakest laws against tobacco advertising in Europe. About a quarter of the population are smokers, including around 100,000 aged 15 to 19. Under the people’s initiative, launched in 2018, only tobacco advertising directly targeting adults would be allowed. Behind the campaign is an alliance health groups, sports organisations, doctors and teachers.


swissinfo.ch is the international branch of the Swiss Broadcasting Corporation (SBC). Its role is to report on Switzerland and to provide a Swiss perspective on international events.

For more articles, interviews and videos visit swissinfo.ch or

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All you need is a laptop and a backpack

Maik Disch works from the most beautiful beaches in Thailand for clients in Switzerland. He sees himself as a typical digital nomad: constantly on the lookout for the next dream destination. Disch’s salary is lower than that of colleagues in Switzerland. On the other hand, the cost of living on the island of Ko Phangan is low and the warm, tropical climate allows him to work outdoors. Fast internet also helps.

Disch’s video portrait is the second in the “Digital offensive” series by Swiss public television SRF. It looks at the work of five young people trying to make a difference in the digital world. (SRF/swissinfo.ch).


swissinfo.ch is the international branch of the Swiss Broadcasting Corporation (SBC). Its role is to report on Switzerland and to provide a Swiss perspective on

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