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Swissinfo

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

Women soldiers in peacekeeping SWISSCOY contingents

Women are still a minority in international peacekeeping operations. The Swiss armed forces’ contingent in Kosovo, SWISSCOY, shows just how important their role can be.
We spent a day with Iris Probst, who now just completed her training module which is part of her three-month pre-deployment preparation at SWISSINT, the Swiss armed forces’ centre for international peacebuilding in Stans-Oberdorf, in canton Nidwalden. She has now been posted to Kosovo for six months, as deputy press and information officer with the Swiss peace-support mission, SWISSCOY.
The proportion of women in the peacekeeping force has risen steadily in recent years. In 2020, around 60 women were sent on mission to Kosovo; by September 2022, this number had risen to nearly 70.  

swissinfo.ch is the international

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Let’s Talk Banking: Crypto


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
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The world’s longest passenger train through the Swiss alps

Switzerland’s largest private railway operator, Rhaetian Railway (RhB), set a new world record for the longest passenger train on a spectacular narrow gauge track. The train – comprising 100 carriages for a total length of 1,910 metres – travelled for 25 kilometres on the Albula/Bernina route from Preda to Alvaneu in canton Graubünden in southeast Switzerland.
It comprised 25 newly delivered train units, or 100 carriages, making a total length of 1,910 metres. On its journey from Preda to Alvaneu the train descended 568 metres. When braking on its way down, it generated the same amount of electricity as a family house consumes in a year.

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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Let’s Talk: polar research and our struggling planet

Some may question the value of polar research when there are other problems closer to home. But what is happening in these remote regions has a knock-on effect all over the globe.

SWI swissinfo.ch invited two Swiss-based scientists to discuss their experiences – including working on the sea ice and examining the largest glacier outside the north and south poles.

Julia Schmale is a professor and head of the Extreme Environments Research Laboratory at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Lausanne (EPFL). She studies the Earth’s atmosphere – especially how aerosols interact with clouds to influence and maybe accelerate polar warming. Schmale has spent a lot of time working on Antarctic and Arctic climate expeditions, including the MOSAiC expedition, which drifted for a year with

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Swiss keep an eye on tensions in Kosovo

Things are tense in northern Kosovo as a deadline approaches for Serbs to swap their Belgrade-issued number plates for local ones. A seemingly trivial request from Kosovo’s government has stoked discontent among ethnic Serbs. Swiss military personnel are among 3,600 NATO peacekeepers in the country, keeping watch. David Olumese, Team Commander LMT (liaison and monitoring team), works in the divided city of Mitrovica, where Albanian and Serb settlements are separated by the river Ibar. He talks to different communities and reports back to KFOR headquarters. He says there is a feeling of uncertainty among people there, as “they don’t know what’s coming”.


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

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Kosovo’s post-war problems

The Serb community in northern Kosovo has been instructed by the government to ditch their Belgrade-issued number plates for Kosovan ones, but for many people, this is tantamount to accepting Kosovo’s independence, something Serbia has avoided since 2008. This video looks at the background to the number plates row and the chances of reconciliation. Swiss peacekeepers are present in northern Kosovo as part of NATO’s KFOR mission.

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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How exclusion became the driving force for democratisation

It is a widely held belief that political inclusion has been an integral part of Swiss life since women gained the right to vote in 1971. Democracy, however, is a work in progress. To this day, some people remain excluded from Swiss political life.

The move towards full democracy has happened in small, sometimes surprising, steps. One example is a historical 2020 vote in canton Geneva: 75% of voters agreed that citizens with mental or physical disabilities were entitled to full voting rights.

This resounding “yes” paved the way for 1,200 citizens previously excluded from the polls to cast their votes in elections and referendums, and even to stand for election.

Geneva thus became the first canton to adopt the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, which

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Neuchâtel: where one woman broke the male monopoly on politics

The first woman in Switzerland ever to be elected to a cantonal parliament was Raymonde Schweizer. This Social Democrat came from the industrial town of La Chaux-de-Fonds in the Neuchâtel Jura. A trade unionist and feminist, she was elected on her first try in 1960, thereby becoming a trendsetter at a time when Swiss women were not even allowed to vote in national elections.

Not once but twice was Neuchâtel the setting for key developments in the decades-long exclusion of women from the country’s democratic system.

This episode is part of the series Swiss democracy hotspots with Claude Longchamp.

This series in several parts is tailored for our author: Claude Longchamp’s expertise makes him the man who can bring alive the places where important things happened.

Longchamp was a

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Melting Swiss glaciers reveal tragedies of the past

Switzerland’s melting glaciers have revealed more unexpected, macabre secrets than ever this summer: human remains and plane wreckage trapped in the ice for over 50 years. Such discoveries are set to multiply in the coming years, says Robert Bolognesi, a snow science expert.

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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Swiss vote: sticking up for animal welfare

The Swiss will vote on September 25 whether to ban factory farming. The country is committed to agriculture and already has very strict animal welfare legislation. The popular initiative was organised by animal rights organisations, who say the welfare requirements for livestock and poultry should at least meet the criteria of the 2018 Bio Suisse standard. But the government and parliament consider farm animals to be adequately protected under current legislation and are calling on voters to reject the initiative.

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

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‘Let’s Talk’: pension reform debate

A revamp of Switzerland’s pension system is set for a popular vote. SWI swissinfo.ch discussed the issue with supporter Andri Silberschmidt and opponent Barbara Gysi.

The reform plans encompass two separate proposals to be decided by voters on September 25: the retirement age for women is to be hiked from 64 to 65, while value-added tax in Switzerland is to rise by 0.4%.

Opinion polls suggest the result could be tight. They also show that divisions among voters don’t just fall along left-right lines, but are above all between the sexes. Women – more affected by the proposal than men – are strongly against it.

In our video debate, follow the arguments of parliamentarians Andri Silberschmidt (from the centre-right Radical Liberal party) and Barbara Gysi (from the left-wing Social

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The circular economy: A new way of making and using things

A circular economy means moving away from using precious raw materials and producing goods that end up in the landfill. Products are repaired, reused and recycled instead. This video shows how the process works in Switzerland, a country with few raw materials that is good at recycling but that also generates among the most waste in Europe.

Various hurdles stand in the way of developing a circular economy and prevent the efficient use of resources, as a report by the Federal Council from March 2022 points out. It is currently examining measures to address these. The potential for improvement is particularly high in the areas of construction and housing, agriculture and food, transport, mechanical engineering and the chemical industry. 

We take a closer look at some of these

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Your views on female conscription

By the end of this decade, the Swiss army expects to have trouble recruiting enough personnel. So the defence department is studying the option of drafting women alongside men for military service or an alternative civilian service. We recently asked readers to send in their views on gender-neutral conscription.


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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Your views on female conscription

By the end of this decade, the Swiss army expects to have trouble recruiting enough personnel. So the defence department is studying the option of drafting women alongside men for military service or an alternative civilian service. We recently asked readers to send in their views on gender-neutral conscription.

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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Episode 3: The Golden ticket

In our satirical video format, Swiss comedian and director Patrick Karpiczenko apologises for Switzerland’s transgressions – this time for so-called golden visas that have been given freely to Russian oligarchs.

Why are so many Russian oligarchs staying in Switzerland? How do they avoid getting sanctioned and having their assets frozen? Is Vladimir Putin hiding his children in southern Switzerland? And why does North Korean dictator Kim Jong-un speak Swiss German?

In this new episode, Patrick Karpiczenko visits “Little Moscow” in canton Zug, gives a short insight into Swiss hospitality before and after Putin’s invasion of Ukraine, and looks into the childhood of North Korean dictator Kim Jong-un who went to a Bern school.

If you want to know more about Russian oligarchs and hidden

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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
Channel:

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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:

Website:

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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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