Sunday, August 10, 2014

Estonia's President Criticizes Switzerland for Lack of Sanctions Against Russia

MOSCOW, August 10 (RIA Novosti) - Estonia's President Toomas Hendrik Ilves criticized Swiss authorities for acting in their own interests and refusing to introduce sanctions against Russia, Sonntags Zeitung newspaper reported on Sunday.
"Switzerland must live with the criticism that it has only dispensed with its own sanctions to gain an advantage for its banking sector," Ilves told the paper.
The president did not specify whether Estonia, as part of the European Union would put pressure on Switzerland. He noted, however, that other countries that claimed to be neutral, such as Sweden and Ireland, ended up supporting the sanctions.
"The concept of neutrality is for me as empty today as ever before," Ilves said.

Swiss politicians say they are afraid of the effect the EU sanctions against Russia may have on their country.
"Sanctions punish Russian citizens and businesses. Nonetheless, it is often forgotten that such sanctions have a negative effect on Swiss companies," a representative of Swiss People's Party Alfred Heer, as quoted by Sonntags Zeitung.
"Such foreign policy does not suit Switzerland," a member of the National council from the Green Party Geri Müller told the paper.
Switzerland is not part of the European Union and is not required to support the full package of restrictive measures, imposed by the EU on Russia. However, since Switzerland belongs to the Schengen zone, some of the sanctions spread on its territory...............................


  1. Switzerland revises its neutrality due to outer pressure — Russian parliament speaker...

    MOSCOW, August 15.. /ITAR-TASS/. Russian parliament speaker Sergei Naryshkin said by cancelling his visit to Switzerland due in September the country has revised its neutrality due to outer pressure.

    Naryshkin said on Thursday he learned from his Swiss counterpart to postpone the visit, which was devoted to the 200th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Russia and Switzerland.

    “No doubt, I am sorry to miss this good symbolic reason for meetings, official talks on development of bilateral cooperation between the two countries, including cooperation between the parliaments,” he said. “I am also sorry since contacts between parliaments are very important now that Europe is facing, I would call it, excessive tension.”

    “The well-known Swiss neutrality, in my opinion, means the country may follow a balanced position and consider all views on complicated issues,” the speaker told reporters on Friday. “In this case the Swiss counterparts must have had to revise the status due to outer pressure.”.......................

  2. Комментарий Департамента информации и печати МИД России о решениях Правительства Швейцарии в связи с ситуацией на Украине....

    13 августа Федеральный совет (Правительство) Швейцарии, обсудив на своем заседании ситуацию на Украине, принял решение о разработке дополнительных мер, направленных на недопущение использования территории Швейцарской Конфедерации для обхода антироссийских санкций Евросоюза, в том числе недавно принятых. Подтвержден запрет на поставки продукции военного назначения, который будет распространен и на некоторые виды продукции двойного назначения.

    В последние дни швейцарской стороной также был отменен ряд заранее согласованных визитов и мероприятий, включая показательные выступления авиационной группы высшего пилотажа «Русские витязи» ВВС России на торжествах по случаю 100-летия ВВС Швейцарии. С недоумением восприняли отмену запланированного на сентябрь 2014 года официального визита Председателя Государственной Думы Федерального Собрания Российской Федерации С.Е.Нарышкина в Швейцарию, приуроченного к юбилейным мероприятиям по случаю 200-летия установления дипломатических отношений между нашими странами.

    Выражаем сожаление в связи с указанными решениями Берна. Они не соответствуют подлинно партнерскому характеру наших отношений, негативно сказываются на перспективах российско-швейцарского сотрудничества.

    1. The Russian Foreign Ministry on Friday sharply criticized the Swiss government for restrictive measures against Russia related to Moscow’s stance on the Ukrainian crisis, saying such moves could harm bilateral relations....

      "We express our disappointment in connection with these decisions taken by Bern," the ministry said in a statement.

      Earlier on Friday, the Swiss government decided to draft additional measures aimed at preventing the use of the territory of the Swiss Confederation to circumvent the existing EU sanctions against Russia. The government also confirmed the ban on transfers of dual-purpose products and technologies to Russia.

      "These decisions do not reflect the partnership nature of our relations and harm the prospects of Russian-Swiss cooperation," Russian Foreign Ministry said.

      On Thursday, the Swiss parliament said it canceled Naryshkin’s official visit to Berne for the celebrations of 200 years of diplomatic relations between Russia and Switzerland.


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