Switzerland Faces 'Security Risk' after Voters Endorse Minaret Ban

World | December 1, 2009, Tuesday // 17:20|  views

Walter Wobmann, President of the committee "Yes for a ban of Minarets", gestures in Egerkingen, Switzerland. Photo by BGNES

A decision by Swiss voters to ban the construction of minarets poses a risk to Switzerland's security, the country's foreign minister says.

Micheline Calmy-Rey said the Swiss government was "very concerned" about the ban, adopted by voters on Sunday.

"Each limitation on the co-existence of different cultures and religions also endangers our security," she told the European security body, the OSCE.

A top UN official has called the ban "clearly discriminatory", the BBC reported.

Navi Pillay, the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, said the ban was "deeply divisive" and at odds with Switzerland's international legal obligations.

More than 57,5% of Swiss voters and 22 out of 26 cantons - or provinces - voted in favour of the ban on Sunday.

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Tags: Switzerland, minaret ban, security risk, Micheline Calmy-Rey


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