21:50 GMT +325 March 2019
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    'Swiss Law First' Initiative Awaits Referendum

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    On Sunday, a national referendum is being held in Switzerland, during which voters will decide whether to give priority to national legislation over international if they contradict each other.

    The initiative, entitled "Swiss Law, Not Foreign Judges" was launched by the national-conservative Swiss People's Party (SVP), which has the largest representation in the National Council, the lower house of the Swiss legislature.

    The Swiss federal government does not support this idea, believing that in this case, the implementation of the European Convention on Human Rights and, in the worst case, the decisions of the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) will be under threat.

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    Another referendum issue concerns changes to the federal law on social insurance.

    If the proposals are approved in a referendum, the federal constitution will be recognised in Switzerland as the supreme source of law.

    International human rights organisations, including Amnesty International, have voiced opposition to this referendum.

    In 2012, a Swiss federal court decided that international law takes precedence.


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